Belfast Telegraph

Wenger turns to Bould

Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger has confirmed Steve Bould will be his assistant next season following the departure of Pat Rice.

The Gunners have announced that long-serving number two Rice will retire at the end of the season after 44 years with the club.

Bould, the former Arsenal defender, will be promoted from his current role as youth team coach.

Wenger said: "I always want to give a chance to people who know how we coach.

"Steve is a very good coach and brings a continuation of our philosophy."

Rice, 63, first joined the club as a youth team player in 1964 before then going on to make 528 senior appearances over 14 seasons.

After a four-year spell with Watford in the early 1980s, Rice then returned to Arsenal as youth team coach before joining Arsene Wenger's backroom staff when the Frenchman arrived in 1996.

Wenger paid tribute to Rice following confirmation of his retirement, saying on www.arsenal.com: "Pat is a true Arsenal legend and has committed almost his whole life to Arsenal football club, which shows huge loyalty and devotion to this club.

"Pat has been amazing for me over the past 16 years. When I first arrived at Arsenal, Pat was always there and taught me so much about this great club."

As a player with Arsenal, right-back Rice was a double winner in 1971 and was captain of the side that won the 1979 FA Cup. He also won 49 caps for Northern Ireland. After becoming Wenger's assistant, Rice helped Arsenal win three Premier League titles and four FA Cups.

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