Published: Sun, April 22, 2018
Sport | By Cameron Gross

Arsenal 4-1 West Ham

Arsenal 4-1 West Ham

"If you look at the club when I arrived I think we have gone a good way together".

But there were plenty of empty seats in the home end and, while the crowd did sing Wenger's name - especially at 4-1 - the groans were audible as defensive mistakes crept into Arsenal's game in the first half.

"I had the feeling a little bit to assist live at my funeral because people speak about "how you were" - so I don't need to die any more", he said, drawing a loud laugh at a packed news conference.

Having proven a divisive figure in recent seasons, the confirmation that Wenger's 22-year tenure will soon be at an end had a unifying impact on the Gunners' fans, who saw Nacho Monreal's second-half goal cancelled out by a fine Marko Arnautovic strike before Ramsey and Lacazette saved the day.

Asked whether he now felt relief that the end of his Arsenal career had been announced, Wenger said: "No, because I was not exhausted".

The 68-year-old Wenger refused to say whether he would take any more managing roles.

"But I believe this club is respected all over the world, much more than in England". Arsenal player ratings vs West Ham.

"Overall, the image we gave is not what it is and not what I like".

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It was a shaky start for Arsenal, which isn't common for them at the Emirates.

"If you speak about emotions that would be, for me, emotionally hard", he added. In sport we can speak and speak and speak, sport is about winning and losing and you have to accept that you will lose games - even when I won't be here anymore - but it's also about something bigger than just winning or losing.

"I'm not resentful and I don't want to make stupid headlines", added Wenger.

Considering the success he has brought to Arsenal and the development he has overseen on and off the pitch, there is a real sadness to the way that this is all ending for Wenger.

Rumours will continue to gather momentum regarding who will replace the division's longest-serving boss, but that person will follow in the footsteps of one of football's most exceptional managerial talents, who received the acclaim of the fan base after the hosts' late rally.

"[Wenger's announcement] did make it more hard but I didn't think it played that way", Moyes told BBC Sport.

"I don't know [about return to Arsenal in a different capacity]".

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