Wenger claims he refused jobs that might affect Arsenal

Arsenal legend Arsene Wenger has claimed that he turned down offers from rival clubs due to his links to our club, whilst adding that he never returned to north London as he believed he could pose as a distraction.

The Frenchman will always be considered a legend at the Emirates, guiding our side to that incredible Invincibles season of 2003-04 whilst we were homed at Highbury, as well as overseeing a number of other memorable campaigns during his 22-year stint in charge.

Wenger now insists that he fully understands why they decided to part ways back in 2018, before claiming that he also turned down a number of other jobs, including opting against a return to the club also.

‘No I haven’t been there. After 22 years I had maybe arrived at the end of the road and people wanted a change, which I can understand,’ Wenger said at the launch of David Dein’s latest book (via the Metro).

‘I was always loyal to the club and turned many, many clubs down because I felt my life is definitely linked with the club.

‘The club has chosen a different direction, which I can understand completely and sometimes you need to change completely to have a new start. Me and my presence there could have been a problem.

‘I stayed away completely to give the club a chance to rebuild a new connection with a new manager. That’s why I never talked about Arsenal and never came back to Arsenal because I didn’t want to be a presence that was maybe not good for the club.’

While I can understand that his return to the board of the club could pose as a threat to the hierarchy, I feel like Mikel Arteta would be one who would benefit from his input, and the fact that they were at the club together previously would mean that there would be no need for an awkward situation arising because of Wenger.

It seems rather believable that other Premier League sides would have come in for him also, with a number of managerial changes having happened over the years in England’s top flight, and I’m pleased that we haven’t had to come up against him in any sense.

Could you have seen him in the dugout of one of our rivals, maybe at Manchester United?


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  1. He is one hell of a principled person otherwise he would long have gone to Real Madrid.St times I get the feeling he sacrificed his reputation just to see Arsenal becoming something.
    He is a legend.

    1. I think it’s a combination of principle and wisdom. He’s wise enough to see what happens at Real Madrid, most who go there don’t get what they hoped for, especially in the managerial department.

      Sooner or later, they have a bad patch and he’s out.

      He built something good at Arsenal and he wanted to see it through as far as he could.

      Many people are completely unaware of the non-football issues in the game from around 17-20 years ago – all they care about or understand is on-field success.

  2. I find it difficult to differentiate between his outstanding loyalty which made him legendary- alongside his earlier years of beautiful football and success in the EPL and what happened later when what happened on the pitch due to all sorts of reasons marred that achievement.
    I find that if I criticise then I’m not being respectful in my own mind to what he brought to the club but then we were not challenging either in the latter years. I get very mixed up with it all

  3. I said it many times and will repeat it. Arsène was not perfect by all means but one thing no one could or should doubt is his love and commitment for the club.he made mistakes but I believe he was always well intentioned.i think it was Kev who said that he couldn’t understand why he stayed so long.i believe that the qualities which made him so great were also his downfall like self-belief, stubbornness.. and the fact that he invested some much in the club must have made it hard for him to walk away,a bit like in a relationship,you stay because you’re not sure if the alternative is worth it, afraid of ending up alone.

    1. Well put Siamois
      In a sense a lot would agree that his commitment to the club was part of his downfall
      In this era longevity is waning

  4. I think Wenger’s downfall was moving to the Emirates stadium prematurely..should have been two seasons later….opinion

  5. ‘I stayed away completely to give the club a chance to rebuild a new connection with a new manager. That’s why I never talked about Arsenal and never came back to Arsenal because I didn’t want to be a presence that was maybe not good for the club.

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