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Page last updated at 14:43 GMT, Friday, 22 May 2009 15:43 UK

Wenger demands respect from fans


I don't accept disrespect - Wenger

Arsene Wenger has urged Arsenal fans to show him and the team more respect after confirming he will remain as manager of the London club next season.

As revealed by BBC Sport on Wednesday, the Frenchman has pledged his commitment to the club following talks with chief executive Ivan Gazidis.

But amid disquiet among some fans this term, he said: "Criticism I accept with respect. Disrespect I don't accept.

"(But) my commitment is as ever and if one day it changes I will inform you."

At an open shareholders' question and answer session last week, Wenger's tactics, team selection and transfer policy were attacked by a section of supporters angry at the club's failure to win any silverware since their 2005 FA Cup triumph.


Those comments clearly stung the Frenchman, who fired a veiled warning that he might quit the club as a result by admitting an opportunity to take over at Real Madrid should Florentino Perez's presidential candidacy prove successful would be "an interesting project".

And in Friday's press conference ahead of Sunday's match against Stoke City, he admitted: "I accept everyone's opinion, but what was not enjoyable in that meeting was that it was disrespectful to some players.

"No matter even if you lose 38 games on the trot I won't accept that."

However, with two years left to run on his current contract at the Emirates Stadium, the 59-year-old is reluctant to leave the club for the Spanish giants.

"I do not want to talk about that (speculation) because that is endless, and I am used to it" said Wenger. "I believe I have faced that for a long time. When you are in a job for a long time, as soon as you have a blip, people are not happy.

My gut feeling is he will be here. At the moment his future is at the club

Wenger on Adebayor

"Through my whole stay here I have had contacts with other clubs, but nothing ever comes out from my side. I cannot master what people say or what is written in the newspapers.

"I believe nobody can question my commitment and I have always shown my commitment to this club. I cannot deny every noise or contact I have."

The future of Togo striker Emmanuel Adebayor, who will miss the Stoke game because of a groin problem, has also been at the centre of much speculation, with both Chelsea and AC Milan said to be considering a £20m bid.

But while Wenger accepts things have not exactly gone to plan for the 6ft 3in African - who smashed 30 goals last season before agreeing a lucrative new deal in the summer - the Arsenal manager maintained: "My gut feeling is he will be here. At the moment his future is at the club.

"He has a long contract and we want to keep him at the club. I am hopeful I will be able to keep him."

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see also
Wenger commits future to Arsenal
20 May 09 |  Arsenal
Eduardo undergoes minor operation
20 May 09 |  Arsenal
Wenger critics dismay Hill-Wood
19 May 09 |  Arsenal
Adebayor frustrated by Arsenal fans
16 May 09 |  Football Focus
Wenger pleads for fans' patience
15 May 09 |  Arsenal
Wenger will have money to invest
14 May 09 |  Arsenal
Man Utd 0-0 Arsenal
18 May 09 |  Premier League
Wenger vows to strengthen squad
10 May 09 |  Arsenal
Wenger rueful after 'worst night'
05 May 09 |  Europe
Arsenal 1-3 Man Utd (agg 1-4)
05 May 09 |  Europe
Wenger transfer policy under fire
17 Apr 09 |  Arsenal
Arsenal 'must triumph in Europe'
28 Apr 09 |  Arsenal
Arsenal need to strengthen - Dein
01 Feb 09 |  Arsenal

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