- Arsenal have unveiled a bronze statue of their former manager Arsene Wenger outside Emirates Stadium
- In the 3.5-metre statue just outside the North Bank Stand, Arsene Wenger is lifting the Premier League trophy
Arsenal unveiled a bronze statue of their former manager Arsene Wenger outside Emirates Stadium on Friday. According to the club’s website, the statue is to commemorate Arsene’s truly remarkable contribution to Arsenal during his time as their manager.
In the 3.5-metre statue just outside the North Bank Stand, Arsene Wenger is lifting the Premier League trophy. The Frenchman was Arsenal’s manager between October 1996 and May 2018, in which time he led them to three Premier League titles and seven FA Cups. It was under Arsene Wenger that Arsenal won the 2003-04 Premier League title undefeated.
Wenger has now joined five other Arsenal legends who have statues outside Emirates Stadium. Those who had statues before the Frenchman are Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp, Ken Friar, Tony Adams and Herbert Chapman.
Speaking after the statue of Arsenal Wenger was unveiled, Arsenal executive vice-chairman Tim Lewis described the Frenchman as the club’s greatest manager.
“We’re delighted to recognize and celebrate Arsene Wenger’s outstanding leadership and career at Arsenal Football Club. Arsene’s contribution to, and achievements with, the club mark him out as the club’s greatest manager.” Arsenal.com quotes Tim Lewis.
Arsene Wenger, who now works for FIFA, is widely regarded as one of the greatest football managers of all time. The 73-year-old Frenchman is up there with the likes of Sir Alex Ferguson, Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho. He became the first manager alongside Sir Alex Ferguson to be inducted into the Premier League Hall of Fame earlier this year.
During his time as Arsenal’s boss, Wenger managed 1,235 matches. He took the Gunners into the Champions League in 20 consecutive years. Next season will be Arsenal’s first campaign in the Champions League since since Wenger’s departure. Last season’s second place finish in the Premier League was their best campaign without Wenger.
Mikel Arteta, who was signed by Arsenal in 2011 during Arsene Wenger’s reign, said he will never forget Wenger for choosing him to be a captain.
“It’s such a great tribute that the club has done something special for Arsene that he fully deserves and merits. With a statue now at the stadium, Arsene can have that recognition and be here at our club forever. I’m so grateful to have played for Arsene at this club in my career. He chose me to be one of his players and selected me to be the captain of the club and that’s something I will never forget.” Mikel Arteta said on Arsenal unveiling a statue for Arsene Wenger.
Mikel Arteta will be a guest of honour on Wednesday when Arsenal face Monaco at Emirates Stadium. Monaco is also a former club of Wenger.