Belfast Telegraph

Arsene Wenger 'will manage next season' whether at Arsenal or not

Arsene Wenger is ready to take another job in management if he opts against extending his contract at Arsenal.

The 67-year-old has been in charge of the Gunners for more than 20 years but has seen his position come under increased scrutiny following the 5-1 thrashing at the hands of Bayern Munich on Wednesday night.

He has found an unlikely supporter in former Manchester United captain Gary Neville but a growing number of Arsenal fans are calling for him to leave when his current deal expires at the end of the season.

Wenger said he will make a final decision over his future in March or April but added that if he departed the Emirates Stadium he would be looking for employment elsewhere.

When asked if he ever feels like he has had enough of management, he replied: "No. No matter what happens, I will manage next season, whether it's here or somewhere else. That's absolutely for sure.

"On a night like that (against Bayern), of course I hate defeat and I hate to lose games. I want to do extremely well for this club and I feel a big responsibility.

"You do not stay somewhere for 20 years to then walk out after a defeat like that. I think what is important is that the club makes the right decision for the future.

"I do not work here for 20 years not to care about this club, because I had many opportunities to go somewhere else during that period and I care about this club and I care about its future."

While some of his former players have suggested Wenger should leave, ex-England defender Neville has stood up for the Frenchman

Wenger was already polarising the opinions of Arsenal supporters after hopes of a first Premier League title since 2004 fell by the wayside following two defeats in their last three domestic fixtures.

It was a 3-1 loss to league leaders Chelsea at Stamford Bridge which led to a supporter holding up a banner that read: "Enough is enough, time to go".

Neville was working as a co-commentator for Sky Sports and the former Manchester United captain called fan Kane Hopps an "idiot" for taking the sign to the game.

It led to a row with supporters forum ArsenalFanTV, with Neville agreeing to appear on their YouTube channel as a result.

And during the interview he continued to defend Wenger.

"It's a unique one with Arsene Wenger, what he has achieved at the club, the greatest ever manager for Arsenal," Neville told ArsenalFanTV.

"His performance levels consistently for 20 years have been unbelievable. And you'd have to say, I do go along the line of, 'Be careful what you wish for'.

"To continue to finish second, third, fourth over that period while still spending that much is an unbelievable achievement."

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph