Arsenal keen on retaining Wenger

Arsenal has begun contract talks with manager Arsene Wenger.

updated: July 18, 2007 18:28 IST
  • Total Shares


Arsenal has begun contract talks with manager Arsene Wenger.

Arsenal chairman Peter Hill-Wood said on Monday it was "very important" for Arsenal to keep Wenger, who has been at the club since September 1996.

"He's done a marvelous job for the last 10 years or so," Hill-Wood told Arsenal's Web site. "He looks pretty fit to me and I think he enjoys himself still. He's got a good job and I'm hoping he'll stay with us."

Hill-Wood said he spoke at length with Wenger recently.

"Hopefully, in the not too distant future we'll have something positive to say about it. I'm confident he'll stay," Hill-Wood said.

Wenger, the most successful manager in Arsenal's 121-year history, has one year left on his contract. Speculation over his future has grown since close friend David Dein was ousted from the Arsenal board in April and striker Thierry Henry left for FC Barcelona last month.

Hill-Wood said Henry's departure had not caused a crisis at the club.

"I believe we've never been in a better position," said Hill-Wood, who has been chairman since 1982 and on the board since 1962. "I think the team is absolutely first class. It's a young side still, but they're a year older now so they're going to be that much better."

Arsenal has signed striker Eduardo da Silva, defender Bacary Sagna and goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski this offseason.

"If you tune in to the media, you would believe that it's been a difficult summer, but I think people have not really looked behind what's happened," Hill-Wood said. "I think we've got a very good squad and we've added a few players, most of them not names people have heard of before. But that's very much Arsene Wenger's style."