Wenger to factor in fans' feelings

LONDON • Arsene Wenger will take into consideration the views of angry Arsenal supporters when he decides whether to remain at the English football club beyond the end of this season.

The manager endured calls for his resignation before and after Tuesday's humiliating 5-1 defeat by Bayern Munich in the Champions League.

The Gunners' heaviest home loss since 1998 ensured their seventh successive last-16 exit from Europe's elite club competition - falling 10-2 on aggregate, sparking furious protests from supporters.

It is not the first time Wenger has been subjected to vitriolic abuse as the Frenchman's failure to build a Premier League title-winning team since 2004 continues to frustrate fans.

With Arsenal's league title challenge in tatters, the 67-year-old plans to contemplate his future a while longer and the fans' opinions will play a role in that decision. Asked yesterday whether he would consider the crowd's displeasure when deciding his future, he said: "Yes - you consider. It is not the most important factor to consider of course. It is difficult for me to judge (the protests). I don't work for my image, I work for this club. I think I have made the right decisions and respect the values of this club."

Arsenal winger Theo Walcott hinted this week that there was some unrest among players and staff at the club. His comments followed reports of a training bust-up involving Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez and his team-mates which Wenger denied.

The manager brushed off talk that he has told his players he is leaving soon and insisted his team still has a strong bond.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 10, 2017, with the headline 'Wenger to factor in fans' feelings'. Print Edition | Subscribe