Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says the criticism he gets from supporters and pundits is down to ‘age discrimination’, as he enters his 22nd year in charge of the Gunners.
Wenger believes his achievements over his entire Arsenal stint are being overlooked for the club’s recent demise, telling BeIN Sport: “When you age, you focus on doing well for your club and ignore all the rest. The older you get, the more it becomes age discrimination,” reports Sky Sports.
Arsenal haven’t won a Premier League title since 2004, haven’t made it past the last-16 of the Champions League since 2010 and have won just three major trophies in the last 13 years.
The Gunners are currently sixth in the Premier League table, 13 points adrift of fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur with eight games to go and supporters have been protesting for Wenger’s swift departure.
The 68-year-old signed a two-year deal last summer, but reports suggest he could leave at the end of this season with how bad Arsenal have fared domestically.
“I accept if the results are not good enough then you have to take the consequences. But overall that perpetual thing of how long you have been at a club, how old you are, I find that a bit difficult to take,” he added.
“But all the rest I have to accept because I am in a public job and have to make results and I accept I will be judged on results.
“I am maybe naive enough to believe that with the time going on, with perspective and context what will stand out is what I have done for my club and not so much the result of the last game or how much I will be applauded when I stop one day.
“I’m a little bit fed up of all that modern thing about completely taking care of image. I’ve always worked my whole life with the idea of who you are rather than how you look so I’m not too concerned about that.”
Arsenal still have the Europa League to salvage their season, having beaten AC Milan over two legs in the last-16 to set up a quarter-final tie against CSKA Moscow. Triumph in the tournament would see the Gunners back into the Champions League next season.