Arsenal want to replace dismissed Unai Emery with a manager in the mould of charming legendary former boss Arsene Wenger.
Emery’s departure was announced at 10.09 am, with assistant coach Freddie Ljungberg made interim boss.
And now the Gunners have drawn up an exhaustive first list of external contenders for the top job which includes Brendan Rodgers, Mikel Arteta, Patrick Vieira, Max Allegri, Nuno Espirito Santo, Mauricio Pochettino and Carlo Ancelotti.
Sportsmail understands one of the key traits the club want in their new full-time boss is the ability to communicate charismatically through the media. Of course, the priority is to appoint someone who can transform the club’s recent fortunes on the pitch.
Financial constraints following two successive years without Champions League football will also be a factor.
The cost of taking Rodgers out of Leicester would also be an issue. Rodgers has around £12.5million left on his existing Foxes deal and the club’s owners would almost certainly demand full compensation for the former Liverpool boss.
However, Sportsmail says Rodgers is greatly admired at Arsenal and is believed to be one of the early favourites for the role. Getting him out of Leicester, however, will prove very tough, particularly mid-season.
It is understood Arteta and Santo also have strong support from inside the Emirates.
Sanllehi and technical director Edu will be largely responsible for identifying the club’s preferred candidates.
There are some within the Club hierarchy who believe Vieira’s legendary ties to Arsenal makes him a worthy candidate, while Ancelotti’s current difficulties at Napoli, and the fact he’s won the Premier League with Chelsea, makes the Italian a contender.
Work will now commence on narrowing their search for a new boss.
Arsenal officials want to give Ljungberg a fair chance to prove he can replace Emery on a full-time basis. But, as it stands, Gunners are leaning towards making an external appointment.