Arsene Wenger has been manager of Arsenal Football Club for over twenty years. But the questions to ask are, has he done a good job at the North London side and how will he be remembered?


It seems that there are two parts to Wenger's reign as manager. There is the first from 1996 to 2006 and the second from 2006 to where we are now in 2017. Let us examine both. On 1st October 1996 Arsene Wenger was appointed manager of Arsenal. Despite being considered a "relative unknown" as the Daily Mail newspaper stated, he went on to revolutionise British football.

This was with his attitude towards "diet, fitness and preparation". In his first ten years at the club, Wenger consistently delivered trophies whilst playing "sparkling football". In the course of this ten year period, Arsenal won the Premier League three times and six FA Cup triumphs according to the Premier League website. What enabled such a period of prosperity were the players at his disposal; in two different ways. The first was the extended longevity of players who were already at the club. As The Telegraph stated, Wenger realised that players such as Tony Adams, Lee Dixon and Nigel Winterburn "had more to give". As a result of the aforementioned changes, Wenger was able to rely on his trusted yet ageing defence for a few more years.

The second was the personnel that Wenger purchased. It is very well buying good players but what Wenger did was buy players at the right time to replace a player who was fading. In his first real foray into the market, Wenger bought players such as Nicholas Anelka, Marc Overmars, Patrick Vieira and Emmanuel Petit. These signings helped Arsenal do the double in 1998.

Sensing the need for changes, as Overmars, Petit and Anelka left, Thierry Henry, Robert Pires and Sylvain Wiltord were all signed. Even as the likes of Adams and Dixon were on wane, players such as Sol Campbell and Kolo Toure were added. A combination of changes to the diet and personnel ensured that the trophies kept on coming, none more so than the 'invincible' season of 2003-4, where the club did not lose one league game all season.


However, what about the second period of time, from 2006 to where we are now? Considering the success that was had in the first ten years, what has happened since can only be described as a total failure. There are mitigating standards. The move to the Emirates stadium has cost a lot and hampered their abilities to attract the top talent. However, despite this, money has still been spent. The likes of Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez did not come cheap. Many have argued that not only have they won the FA Cup twice recently but have finished in the top four every season, which they feel is a sign of success. However, imagine such an argument being made from to players such as Henry and Pires that 'we are successful because we qualify for the Champions League every year'.

They would have laughed in your faces. It seems that the ambitions of the club have changed, not helped of course by the fact that they have not won the league since 2004. They do currently have a strong squad capable of going all the way but they just never seem to do so. This has led to what can only be described as a continual exodus. Players over the course of last five or so years have left because they do not see it viable that Arsenal will deliver trophies consistently. The likes of Samir Nasri, Gael Clichy, Robin van Persie and Cesc Fabregas all leaving illustrates that.

So, overall?

So, has Wenger done a good job? Over the course of the twenty years I think he has. He has changed the image of the team, he made them winners and has consistently kept them near the top despite the financial restraints.

But he has not won a league title in twelve years and continues to stumble when it really matters. And this is how I think he will be remembered; the first ten years remarkable and the next ten years not so much.