Arsenal face arguably their toughest test of the season so far on Saturday evening when Antonio Conte’s Chelsea side visit the Emirates. And in the build-up to the London derby, we thought we’d run the rule over both gaffers in an attempt to work out who’s the better boss.
The two coaches have never met before, but Arsene Wenger will be hoping his team can continue their fine form of late by taking advantage of a stuttering Chelsea side who’ve dropped points recently.
The Gunners manager has 22 years more experience in the dugout than his opponent, in a career which stretches back to 1984. In fact, Conte was just 14 years old when Wenger took charge of his first game for Nancy.
However, experience is something the Italian boss certainly isn’t lacking, having managed his country for the last two years before leaving to take over the Stamford Bridge hotseat.
Italy were one of the standout sides of Euro 2016 under Conte, defeating Belgium and Spain with relative ease while narrowly missing out on a place in the semi-finals after losing on penalties to Germany.
And prior to his two-year stint in charge of the Italian national side, he led Juventus to three consecutive Serie A titles for the first time since 1933. Not a bad CV so far for the 47-year-old.
Wenger has the upper-hand on Chelsea’s first-timers
But in Wenger, he’s up against one of the longest-serving managers in world football, with 11 major trophies to his name in Europe.
It’s a well-known fact that the Blues are a side Wenger has struggled against in recent years, and for all the attacking talent he’s had at his disposal, it’s now been six league games without a goal against the west London outfit.
But while all of the recent statistics suggest Arsenal will struggle to win this one, only four of Chelsea’s previous 11 managers since Wenger took over in north London have beaten the French manager at the first time of asking.
As win rates go, it’s Conte who has the upper hand over Wenger with 56 per cent, although that may simply be down to the fact that he’s not been in charge as long as the French boss. Bearing that in mind, Wenger’s win rate of 54.1 per cent is pretty impressive.
It remains to be seen whether or not Gunners fans will unite for Wenger’s 20th anniversary with the north London club. How his side performs in this game might be the deciding factor in that, but our traders make Mesut Ozil and co 7/5 favourites to take all three points.
Who would you rather have managing your side? Let us know in the comments section below!
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing