Arsene Wenger shocked Arsenal players on Friday after announcing that he will finally step down as manager at the end of the season after 22 years in charge.
The 68-year-old Frenchman, who joined Arsenal from Nagoya Grampus Eight all the way back in 1996, stunned players and staff, telling them about his departure completely out of the blue at the club’s London Colney training base. He introduced the sudden news by telling them ‘I have bad news’.
He told Arsenal’s official website: ‘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.’