135 Facts About Arsene Wenger


Arsene Charles Ernest Wenger is a French former football manager and player who is currently serving as FIFA's Chief of Global Football Development.

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Arsene Wenger was the manager of Arsenal from 1996 to 2018, where he was the longest-serving and most successful in the club's history.

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Arsene Wenger was named manager of Arsenal in 1996; his appointment was greeted with little enthusiasm from the English media and his players alike.

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Arsene Wenger guided Arsenal to another league and cup double in 2002, and won his third league title in 2004, which earnt distinction as he guided his team to an undefeated domestic league season – something achieved only once before in English football, by Preston North End, 115 years previously.

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Arsene Wenger oversaw Arsenal's relocation to the Emirates Stadium, and prioritised the club's finances in his second decade to meet costs.

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Arsene Wenger is one of the most celebrated managers of his generation, having changed perceptions of the sport and profession in England and abroad.

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At Monaco, Arsene Wenger earned a reputation for spotting young talent and developing a youth system, which he carried through at Arsenal.

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Arsene Charles Ernest Wenger was born on 22 October 1949 in Strasbourg, Alsace, the youngest of three children born to Alphonse and Louise Wenger.

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Arsene Wenger was sent to fight on the Eastern Front in October 1944, at the age of 24.

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Arsene Wenger family owned an automobile spare parts business and a bistro titled La Croix d'Or.

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Arsene Wenger's parents had difficulty looking after their children, but Duttlenheim was a village where everyone took care of the young; Wenger compared it in later years to a kibbutz.

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The primary school which Arsene Wenger attended was run by the Catholic Church, and as one of its brightest students, he later was accepted into a secondary school in Obernai.

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Arsene Wenger was taken to games in Germany, where he held an affection for Borussia Monchengladbach.

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Population of Duttlenheim was short in numbers, it proved difficult to field a team of 11 players of equal ages; Arsene Wenger did not play for FC Duttlenheim until the age of 12.

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In 1969 Arsene Wenger was recruited to nearby third division club Mutzig.

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Arsene Wenger was of the age to start increasing his tactical knowledge of the sport.

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Arsene Wenger frequently read France Football and alongside Hild made trips to Germany to watch Bundesliga matches and observe the different managerial styles.

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Arsene Wenger represented Alsace in a competition held annually between the regional leagues.

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Arsene Wenger took his studies further, and in 1971 enrolled at the Faculte des sciences economiques et de gestion at the University of Strasbourg to read politics and economics after a brief stint in medicine.

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Arsene Wenger was selected to represent the national French students squad and visited Nigeria, Lebanon, and Uruguay – where the World Students Championship was held in 1976.

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At Mulhouse, Arsene Wenger was managed by Paul Frantz, who had a profound impact on his career.

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Arsene Wenger played in midfield for Mulhouse, often positioned on the right.

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Arsene Wenger made the decision to leave, as the regular commutes to Mulhouse from Strasbourg overwhelmed him.

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Arsene Wenger's playing career at the age of 28 began to wane, but he never anticipated a role in the first team.

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In November 1978, he made his debut for the first team against MSV Duisburg in the UEFA Cup and a month later, Arsene Wenger played against champions AS Monaco in the First Division.

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Arsene Wenger made his final appearance for the senior side in 1979.

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Arsene Wenger spent the last two years of his playing career predominantly running RC Strasbourg's reserve and youth team.

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Arsene Wenger became conscious of the importance of speaking English, and during his holidays enrolled on a three-week language course at the University of Cambridge.

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Arsene Wenger studied for his coaching badge at the Centre de ressources, d'expertise et de performance sportives in Strasbourg – this consisted of a course to coach children, followed by an intensive six-day course which led up to the national coaching badge.

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The latter programme took place in Vichy, and was spread over three weeks, allowing Arsene Wenger to be able to put Frantz's teachings of isometrics into practice.

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Arsene Wenger was always watching videos of his opponents, of his own team.

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Challenge of sustaining Nancy as a Ligue 1 club was difficult as Arsene Wenger inherited a squad of sub-standard quality and he was given limited money to spend.

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Arsene Wenger nevertheless relished the prospect of conducting business in the transfer market, and enjoyed freedom to trial theories he read about.

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Arsene Wenger took the squad away from their usual summer training camp to Val Thorens, so that the players could acclimatise to the high-altitude.

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From a managerial perspective, Arsene Wenger struggled to keep his emotions in check; losing made him "physically sick", to the point where he once stopped the team bus to vomit after a game.

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Arsene Wenger guided the club to a respectable 12th-place finish, all the more surprising given he constantly tinkered his team.

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Once Nancy's relegation was confirmed, Arsene Wenger was permitted to leave the club by mutual consent and was confirmed as Monaco manager in 1987.

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In 2001, Arsene Wenger said that the impact of bribery and corruption had influenced his decision to leave France, as Marseille were found guilty of match fixing in 1994.

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Shortly after his dismissal, Arsene Wenger travelled to the United Arab Emirates to attend a series of conferences held by FIFA.

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Arsene Wenger was a member of the football governing body's technical committee, responsible for analysing the 1994 World Cup, and made a presentation to coaches of emerging football nations.

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Arsene Wenger's speech was closely followed by Japanese delegates, whose country had invested millions into the restructuring of its football league system.

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Representatives of Toyota, the majority owner of Nagoya Grampus Eight soon met with Arsene Wenger and offered him the chance to become the club's manager.

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Arsene Wenger deliberated, even though the idea of working abroad appealed to him; negotiations between the two parties lasted for two months.

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In December 1994, Arsene Wenger agreed to become manager of Nagoya Grampus, on a two-year contract worth ¥75m annually.

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Arsene Wenger hired former Valenciennes manager Boro Primorac, whom he had befriended during the match-fixing scandal, as his assistant.

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Alexandre Torres joined Nagoya after Arsene Wenger identified the defender by watching Brazilian football on the television, and the manager brought in Franck Durix and his former player Passi.

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Arsene Wenger's methods had the desired effect – Nagoya won 17 of their following 27 games to finish runners-up in 1995.

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Arsene Wenger shortly received the J League Manager of the Year award for 1995, while Stojkovic claimed the player's honour.

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In January 1996, Arsene Wenger guided the club to their first piece of silverware as Nagoya defeated Sanfrecce Hiroshima to win the Emperor's Cup.

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Arsene Wenger turned down the offer as he was earlier approached by Arsenal.

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Arsene Wenger managed Nagoya for the final time on 28 August 1996 and delivered a farewell speech, thanking the fans in Japanese.

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Arsene Wenger returned to Japan as a television pundit for the 2003 FIFA Confederations Cup, and a decade later, took Arsenal to face Nagoya in a pre-season friendly.

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The appointment was delayed for several weeks as Arsene Wenger was under contract at Nagoya Grampus and the club wanted time to make a final decision.

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On 22 September 1996, Arsene Wenger was unveiled as Arsenal manager, after Nagoya Grampus granted him his release.

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Arsene Wenger officially assumed the role on 1 October 1996, becoming the first Frenchman to manage in the Premier League.

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Arsene Wenger adopted a hands-on approach to training sessions which energised the squad and made steps to change the drinking culture that afflicted Arsenal.

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Arsene Wenger later banned his players from casually drinking together.

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Arsene Wenger promoted pasta as the pre-match dish, encouraged boiled chicken instead of red meat and discouraged junk food.

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The English players often set up pranks on Arsene Wenger to relieve hostility and nicknamed him "Inspector Clouseau", due to his clumsy nature.

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In preparation for the forthcoming season, Arsene Wenger took the Arsenal squad to Austria, which would become the club's usual pre-season base.

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Arsene Wenger raided his old club Monaco to acquire the services of Christopher Wreh, Gilles Grimandi and Emmanuel Petit.

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Arsene Wenger assessed Arsenal lost the Premier League because of their poor home performances, and felt they needed more pace and power.

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Arsene Wenger suggested Manchester United were responsible for making the title race "interesting".

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Arsene Wenger became the first foreign manager to win the double, when his team beat Newcastle United in the 1998 FA Cup Final.

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Arsene Wenger used a portion of the proceeds generated through the Anelka sale to fund the build of the Arsenal Training Centre, expressing his desire to establish a "home away from Arsenal".

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Arsene Wenger renewed his forward line by signing Davor Suker from Real Madrid, and Thierry Henry, who joined after seven "injury-interrupted" months at Juventus for £11.

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Arsene Wenger guided his team to the final, where they lost to Galatasaray on penalties.

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Arsene Wenger rued his team's inability to make possession count, but refused to blame individuals, namely Henry, for missing chances.

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Arsene Wenger signed young England internationals Richard Wright and Francis Jeffers, midfielder Giovanni van Bronckhorst from Rangers as a partner for Vieira, and convinced defender Sol Campbell to join from local rivals Tottenham Hotspur on a free transfer.

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Arsene Wenger appointed Vieira as club captain following Adams' retirement, and made few additions to his double-winning squad, signing defender Pascal Cygan, midfielder Gilberto Silva and utility player Kolo Toure.

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Arsene Wenger showed moments of exasperation during the match by loosening his tie and bellowing orders from the touchline.

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Journalist Phil McNulty wrote that Arsene Wenger's demeanor "spoke of someone who had the title in his grasp but now saw it slipping from his fingers".

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Arsene Wenger retained his best players, despite interest shown by Chelsea's new owner Roman Abramovich.

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Arsene Wenger noticed the two as a midfield pairing was ineffective, and felt keeping Fabregas would benefit the club's future.

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Arsene Wenger sold some of his experienced players such as Campbell, Lauren and Pires, sanctioned Cole's move to Chelsea in part exchange for defender William Gallas, and integrated young players like Theo Walcott and Alex Song into the first team.

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Arsene Wenger described it as a "sad day for Arsenal, " and sought assurances from the board over his future as well as reasons for Dein's departure.

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Arsene Wenger was subject to criticism from Arsenal fans; he praised the travelling supporters, though referred to a section of the home crowd as treating him "like a murderer".

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Arsene Wenger had reached a landmark in October 2009, surpassing George Allison to become Arsenal's longest-serving manager.

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Arsene Wenger mostly brought in experienced players, such as Yossi Benayoun on loan from Chelsea, Everton's Mikel Arteta and Germany international Per Mertesacker.

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When Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson learnt of the situation, he called Arsene Wenger to push through a deal and Van Persie agreed to join Manchester United in August 2012.

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Arsene Wenger made changes to the side for their second leg against Bayern, dropping captain Thomas Vermaelen and Szczesny, in place of Koscielny and Lukasz Fabianski.

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Arsene Wenger was instrumental in the latter deal; he phoned and spoke to the German in his native language, convincing him that a move to England would enhance his career.

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Arsenal consolidated fourth position in the league, and Arsene Wenger guided his team to FA Cup success, as they came from two goals down to beat Hull City in the final, and clinch Arsenal their first trophy in nine years.

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Arsene Wenger won his sixth FA Cup in May 2015, which placed him alongside George Ramsay as the most successful manager in the competition's history.

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Arsene Wenger served a four-match touchline ban and had to pay a £25,000 fine after pushing referee Anthony Taylor during a win at home against Burnley.

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In mid-2017, Arsene Wenger brought in two signings; Alexandre Lacazette for a fee of £45m, the club's most expensive signing, and Sead Kolasinac on a free transfer from Schalke 04.

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The club dealt with player unrest in the form of Sanchez, who voiced his desire to depart, and Arsene Wenger sanctioned a transfer to Manchester United in January 2018, whereby Arsenal received Henrikh Mkhitaryan in a swap-deal.

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Arsene Wenger was inspired by Borussia Monchengladbach as a child and was later influenced by Total Football, a playing style developed by Rinus Michels at Ajax in the 1970s.

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Arsene Wenger recollected the team as having "perfect players everywhere and that was the sort of football I wanted to be playing myself".

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Arsene Wenger encourages sportsmen to show intuition, and makes observations rather than explicitly giving orders.

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Arsene Wenger, having earlier suggested he would never resort to a negative system, later adopted the formation for Champions League matches.

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Arsene Wenger proved able to implement his entertaining vision of football, particularly at Arsenal.

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Arsene Wenger is not renowned for making game-changing substitutions, nor had his tactics helped his teams overcome flexible opponents.

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Arsene Wenger's ideals are noticeably different from the pragmatic approach of his rivals, though he has assembled teams to produce disciplined performances, markedly the 2005 FA Cup Final against Manchester United.

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Arsene Wenger led training sessions, but delegated responsibility to his coaching staff, who predominantly work with the players.

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Arsene Wenger spent the day before a match focusing on the mental and tactical approach of his squad and varied his training style.

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Arsene Wenger regarded a well-balanced diet as an essential part of a player's preparation.

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At Arsenal, Arsene Wenger brought in dieticians to explain the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, and acquired the help of Philippe Boixel, an osteopath for the France national team, to realign the players' bodies each month.

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Plyometrics, exercises designed to strengthen the muscles, were introduced and Arsene Wenger routinely made players stretch before and after matches.

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Arsene Wenger relies on a network of scouts and personal contacts to find and attract talented footballers to play under him.

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Arsene Wenger's strategy is aided by data; for instance, the decision to sign Flamini in 2004 came about as he was looking at statistics to find an understudy to Vieira.

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Arsene Wenger fast-tracked young players such as Petit and Lilian Thuram, and handed debuts to Henry and David Trezeguet.

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In England, Arsene Wenger has used his extensive knowledge of the European transfer market and rulings – particularly in his native France – to recruit players.

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Arsene Wenger remained in contact with Guillou's Abidjan-based academy, where he discovered future Arsenal players Toure and Emmanuel Eboue, and successfully persuaded Fabregas and Hector Bellerin, amongst other La Masia graduates, to leave Barcelona and join him.

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Arsene Wenger described this period as "very sensitive" because of the financial restrictions that came with the stadium move.

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Arsenal have benefited from increased revenue since the Emirates move, and negotiating new sponsorship deals has allowed Arsene Wenger to make marquee signings such as Ozil, Sanchez, Granit Xhaka, Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

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Arsene Wenger accused United striker Ruud van Nistelrooy of being "a cheat" in a post-match television interview, and was reprimanded with a £15,000 fine by the Football Association.

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Arsene Wenger responded by pointing out he was only answering journalists' questions about Chelsea, and described Mourinho's attitude as "disrespectful".

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Arsene Wenger said Mourinho's comments were "silly and disrespectful" and had embarrassed Chelsea.

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Arsene Wenger has directed his anger towards referees when decisions have not gone his team's way.

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Arsene Wenger successfully appealed the ban, but was reprimanded and fined £10,000 for his actions.

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In March 2011, Arsene Wenger was charged with improper conduct by UEFA, over comments made to referee Massimo Busacca, after his team's defeat to Barcelona.

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Arsene Wenger was fined €10,000 and suspended for one UEFA club competition match; however, the ban was later extended to a further two games, after Wenger was found guilty of communicating with Arsenal's bench while serving a touchline ban against Udinese.

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Arsene Wenger was fined £33,000 and handed a three-match touchline ban in the competition.

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At Arsenal, Arsene Wenger has enjoyed a great deal of support and backing from the club board of directors, who demonstrated exceptional faith in the manager and his long-term vision.

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Arsene Wenger himself reflected that his greatest legacy at Arsenal would be the style he implemented.

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Supporters regularly display banners such as "Arsene Wenger knows" and "In Arsene Wenger we trust" during home matches, though there became a growing number of protests against his management.

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Arsene Wenger's job has involved managing change, and all the hypocrisy which comes with that.

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Arsene Wenger was awarded France's highest decoration, the Legion d'honneur, in 2002.

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Arsene Wenger was appointed an Honorary Officer of the Order of the British Empire in the 2003 Birthday Honours for services to football.

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Arsene Wenger was inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame in 2006, along with former England manager Ron Greenwood.

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In May 2016, the Stade Arsene Wenger was officially opened near Strasbourg, where Wenger was born.

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Arsene Wenger was one of the first managers in English football to scout abroad for talent.

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Richard Jolly writing for The National added that Arsene Wenger aided the Premier League's globalisation and "showed the merit of hiring foreign managers on the basis of their record abroad".

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Arsene Wenger himself felt he had changed attitudes towards foreign managers in England:.

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Arsene Wenger saw the issue of nationality as irrelevant and said, "When you represent a club, it's about values and qualities, not about passports".

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Arsene Wenger has often tried to defend his players, involved in controversial incidents on the field, by saying that he has not seen the incident; this is an option he resorts to when there is no "rational explanation" to defend him, and that he has the player's best interests in mind.

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In February 1999, Arsene Wenger offered Sheffield United a replay of their FA Cup fifth round match immediately after the match had finished, due to the controversial circumstances in which it was won.

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Arsene Wenger was a world brand ambassador for FIFA World Cup sponsor Castrol.

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Arsene Wenger takes senior authority as a member of the Football and Technical Advisory Panels involved in IFAB review giving judgement on rule changes mandated by FIFA.

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Arsene Wenger has authored a book on football management exclusively for the Japanese market, Shosha no Esupuri in English, published by Japan Broadcast Publishing in August 1997.

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Arsene Wenger is a Roman Catholic, and he attributes his outlook and values to his religious upbringing in Alsace.

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Arsene Wenger grew up speaking French and German, and studied English on a three-week course in Cambridge, learning Italian, and Spanish to help his career.

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In 2010, Arsene Wenger appealed for privacy after a British newspaper alleged he had an affair with a French singer.

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Arsene Wenger said in a statement that he wished to deal with the matter privately.

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