Arsene Wenger may end career at Arsenal and spend retirement in England
Published: 10 October 2013
Updated: 12:55, 10 October 2013
Arsene Wenger has dropped a strong hint that he will reject any interest from Paris St-Germain and remain in English football for the rest of his career.
Wenger’s contract at Arsenal expires at the end of the season and while the 63-year-old has spoken of his desire to agree an extension, uncertainty about his intentions will grow the longer it remains unsigned.
The Frenchman has claimed that the Gunners’ performance this season will be a significant factor in influencing his decision and PSG are at the head of the queue should his resolve waver.
Wenger advised Nasser Al-Khelaifi and his Qatari partners over their takeover at PSG and he continues to enjoy a healthy relationship with them.
They are prepared to wait, seemingly indefinitely, for Wenger to complete his work in England before offering him a senior role at the club — as manager, director of football, or perhaps as a club ambassador.
However, the latest declaration from the Arsenal manager about his future suggests PSG may be left disappointed. “I can see the rest of my life in England, why not?” he said. “I feel comfortable in this country because we share a common passion for football and as well I am very thankful for this country for having accepted me and giving me a chance.
“I am happy on the football pitch.”
Wenger’s affection for England has undeniably grown during his 17 years in north London.
National identity is a salient topic in the game at present, with the Football Association considering a move to tempt Manchester United winger Adnan Januzaj into rejecting several other countries in favour of possibly representing England in the future.
Jack Wilshere offered a rather sceptical view of such a move. FIFA rules dictate a player is eligible for the country he lives in if he has been there for five consecutive years after his 18th birthday but Wilshere believes such qualification is superficial and that “only English people should play for England”.
His club manager offered a more pragmatic view. “We live in a global world,” said Wenger. “I have players who have three different nationalities. And at the end of the day I ask them, ‘Where do you really feel you belong?’ And that is, for me, where you are from.
“At the end of the day I believe you are from the country where you feel the most comfortable with the culture of the country.”