By Dipo Olowookere
Manager of Arsenal Football Club of England, Mr Arsene Wenger, has confirmed leaving the London outfit at the end of this season.
The French tactician joined the club in 1996 as coach from Monaco in France and has won many laurels for the North London side, including the league title, FA Cup and others.
Mr Wenger has had poor runs lately, which have frustrated fans of Arsenal all over the world. Before now, some of them had called for his sack or resignation with the tactician adamant to leave.
Arsenal are presently sitting sixth on the table with their chances of going to Europe for the Europa Cup still threatened by Burnley, who are just two points behind the Gunners.
The club has lost its Champions’ League spot to its London rivals and this has not made fans happy, especially with Tottenham, their North London arch rival, in position to play the Europe’s elite competition.
“After careful consideration and following discussions with the club, I feel it is the right time for me to step down at the end of the season.
“I am grateful for having had the privilege to serve the club for so many memorable years.
“I managed the club with full commitment and integrity.
“I want to thank the staff, the players, the Directors and the fans who make this club so special.
“I urge our fans to stand behind the team to finish on a high.
“To all the Arsenal lovers take care of the values of the club.
“My love and support for ever,” the 68-year-old manager said in an emotional statement to the club’s fans.
Mr Wenger is leaving Arsenal despite having 12 months remaining on his contract. He has tipped his former player and club captain, Patrick Vieira, to coach Arsenal someday.
Vieira led the famous ‘invicibles’ team of 2003-04 under Mr Wenger to win the Premier League title.
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