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Goodbye, Farewell, Arsene

It was a day you knew that was coming. Whether it was in 6 or 18 months, you knew at some point that life without Arsene at Arsenal would have to begin. Still, it doesn’t make today’s announcement any less shocking than it is.

At 5AM this morning I got a text from Brian aka (@GunnerFaithful) which woke me up and shared the news that Arsene had announced he was stepping down at the end of this season.


I came to finding Arsenal in the late 80s with George Graham as manager. During my time in the US Navy I switched between Naples and London as a member of the CINCUSNAVEUR staff. During that time through my stay in Europe I saw Arsenal a few times. Even being there that one magical night during an absolute quirk of fate but that’s not this story.

The fact is thought being an American in the military made it hard to catch up on Arsenal. I remember catching the Weekly version of the Express that came out in the US every Sunday. I could catch the news but it wasn’t really until the mid-90s and the tenure of Arsene Wenger that I really got to watch Arsenal with any consistency.

And for many of the global fans, Arsene Wenger is the only manager they’ve ever known as Arsenal fans. But for others, those blessed with the comfort of our beautiful history they’ve been able to witness his transformation of this great club to the trajectory and path it now sits on.

Right now there are fans who are still angry at how Arsenal have been performing in the last few years under Wenger. There’s even been a hash tag #NoMoreTearsToCry going around. The majority even of those who felt the time was right, will look back and remember the greatness that we felt during the peak of Arsene’s tenure at the club.

He’s given us 3 titles, two doubles, an undefeated season, 20 years in the Champion’s League, a UCL final and countless other memories. He made football players more professional. Changed the scouting landscape and gave us some of the best footballing memories ever (0-1 at Real Madrid anyone.)

That’s why regardless of whatever feelings you may have it’s time to let that go. Let’s do this in the style and class of Arsenal; Say farewell to a man who even though time may have caught up with him still deserves the platitudes and recognition someone of his great stature deserves.

Many will argue that the last few years have tarnished his legacy. Pish! He may have been stubborn enough to not accept the changing landscape of football, but that doesn’t make his legacy at Arsenal any less brighter than it is. In fact as is often the case with the greats, we’ll see that his legacy will shine even brighter.

Yes, I openly have advocated for this moment. Fact is I simply felt it was time. 20+ years in sport is a long time for anyone. That being said it doesn’t change my admiration, respect or love of the man.

I will remember the way he changed how Arsenal played – from the 1-0 lock down George Graham era to the free flowing articulate football that has been missing recently.

His thoughtful witty response and the wry smile that gave away his true feelings on matters. His vision of the football club that looked beyond the year he was in.

People far more articulate than I will come up with the fitting prose to pay tribute to Arsene. All I can say is thank you. Thank you for what you have done for our club. Thank you for having the vision to drive this club to a bigger version of itself and thank you for being you.

We look forward now. The sport will miss him (Jose sure will). He showed class in an often times classless business. There will never be another manager like him.

Arsene Wenger Statement in Full (courtesy

“After careful consideration and following discussions with the club, I feel it is the right time for me to step down at the end of the season.

“I am grateful for having had the privilege to serve the club for so many memorable years.

“I managed the club with full commitment and integrity.

“I want to thank the staff, the players, the Directors and the fans who make this club so special.

“I urge our fans to stand behind the team to finish on a high.

“To all the Arsenal lovers take care of the values of the club.

“My love and support for ever.”

Arsene Wenger

What are you best memories of Arsene’s time at Arsenal?

20 Years of Arsene Wenger

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