Jack Wilshere slams Arsenal's decision to SACK Steve Bould

‘What is going on?’ Jack Wilshere slams Arsenal’s decision to SACK Steve Bould as U23s boss after confirming his departure following 33 YEARS in north London as part of restructuring of coaching staff

  • Steve Bould had been in charge of Arsenal’s U23s side for the last two seasons 
  • But the Gunners came close to relegation from top division of Premier League 2 
  • Academy manager Per Mertesacker is looking to restructure coaching staff 
  • A decision has yet to be made on who will succeed Bould as U23s boss 

Former Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere has slammed the club’s decision to sack U23s boss Steve Bould after 33 years at the club.

The former defender had been in charge of the Gunners’ U23 side for the last two seasons but they came close to being relegated from the top division of Premier League 2 and only secured their safety on the final day of the 2020-21 campaign.

Now, as revealed by Sportsmail back in in May, the 58-year-old has been sacked after 33 years at the club at academy manager Per Mertesacker’s behest, who is looking to implement a restructuring of the coaching staff. 

Jack Wilshere (left) has slammed Arsenal’s decision to sack Steve Bould as U23s boss

Bould has been in charge of the U23s for two seasons but they came close to relegation last season

But Wilshere – whose development as a youngster at the club was presided over by Bould – was left staggered by the news, tweeting: ‘Can’t believe it. Another proper Arsenal man gone! What is going on?? What a coach and what a guy…

‘All the best bouldy.’

Meanwhile, former Germany centre-back Mertsacked told the club’s official website: ‘Steve has been a fantastic servant for us on and off the pitch.

‘His record as a player speaks for itself and he has been an inspiration to generations of young players coming through the academy.

‘This has been a very hard decision to make. Steve’s contribution to the under-23s and the club as a whole has been huge and he will always be an important figure in our history.’ 

Academy manager Per Mertesacker (left) is looking to restructure the club’s coaching staff

Technical director Edu meanwhile added: ‘We are massively grateful to Steve for everything. He has helped develop so many top professionals and his experience and character has had a huge impact. 

‘I would like to add my thanks for his contribution and wish him and his family well for the future.’ 

A decision has yet to be made on who will succeed Bould as U23s boss.

Bould enjoyed a glittering playing career for Arsenal between 1988 and 1999, making a total of 372 appearances.

He went on to lift three league titles, the FA Cup, the League Cup and the European Cup Winners’ Cup, before a year at Sunderland.

Bould had a glittering playing career at Arsenal and then served as Arsene Wenger’s No 2

After returning to Arsenal in 2001 as a youth coach, he eventually stepped up to coach the U18s and presided over the development of players such as Wilshere, Serge Gnabry and Hector Bellerin. 

Arsenal won the FA Youth Cup in 2009 and also won two U18 league titles under Bould.

Between 2012 and 2019, Bould was part of the first-team coaching staff as an assistant coach to Arsene Wenger and Unai Emery, but he returned to youth football when he swapped jobs with Freddie Ljungberg.

Ljungberg was widely praised for his work with the U23s’ dynamic style of play under him, but with Bould in charge much they became rather rigid, and were on the wrong end of some woeful results this season.

There were some mitigating circumstances, with Arsenal loaning out a host of players and new arrivals struggling to settle. 

He was also an assistant to former Gunners boss Unai Emery before he was sacked in 2019

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