Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger: I would be happy to sit in the North Bank – I can shout at the next manager
- Credit: PA Wire/PA Images
Arsene Wenger cut a dignified figure during his final press conference at the Emirates on Sunday afternoon.
The departing Arsenal boss was in impish mood after his side’s 5-0 victory over Burnley in his last ever match as Gunners boss at the Emirates.
Arsenal swept to an emotional victory on a gloriously sunny afternoon in North London as Wenger’s men eased past Sean Dyche’s Turf Moor outfit.
After Wenger had been given a guard of honour by both sets of players before the start, in front of a sold out crowd of 59,540 – looking resplendent in their Merci Arsene red t-shirts – the home team were worthy winners.
Speaking after the match in a packed press room here at the Emirates he said: “First of all, we had good weather.
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“It was a game that is in continuity of our home form. The team played with great spirit, apart from that it was as well a sad day.
“I came here to take the first photos before the lorry came in. I’ve worked one every part.”
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Wenger refused to be drawn on the man who will take his role next season once he leaves Arsenal following their final match of the season a week on Sunday against Huddersfield Town.
He said: “I think it’s better I don’t speak publicly about the next manager, I’m not involved in the story. I’m nothing to do with that. I just think he inherits a team that is much better than people thinks it is. with the right conditions this will challenge next season.
“In my job you learn to disconnect from yourself. I have to reconnect with myself now. I will cherish every minute I was here. As well, it’s a new start for me.”
Wenger was handed the gold trophy the club received after the 2003-04 season when his side remained unbeaten over the course of their 38 match league season.
He also took part in a lap of honour and was lauded by the sell-out Emirates crowd, with most fans staying at their seats to give him a warm send-off.
Wenger was asked he he thought of the reception.
He said: “It means [the fans], even if they aer not always happy, they still respect me.
“That’s how I see it. They know my commitment was genuine, total, with complete integrity,” before saying it was a surprise to be handed the gold trophy, before adding he didn’t know where he would keep it.” There was humour too as he said he would be happy to sit in the North Bank as a fan, adding: “I can shout at the next manager.”
When asked about his highlights over his 22-year-reign he said there were too many to mention over the course of his 840 matches.
Dignified as ever Wenger also showed his genuine concern for his old foe turned friend Sir Alex Ferguson.
He said: “I was with him on the pitch last week [at Old Trafford].
“I went to see him in his box after the game.
“He looked in perfect shape, he looked very happy.
“We wish him very well and can recovery very quickly. He is a strong man.”