Football

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Wenger boys must face the music

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Arsene Wenger accepts Arsenal are about to embark upon a "decisive season" and admits he will have to rethink his strategy should the young Gunners fail to make an impact on the Barclays Premier League title race.

The French coach rejected the overtures of Real Madrid, who were reported to have made an offer worth around £6million a year, to "finish the job" he started back at Highbury more than a decade ago.

"I refused [Real Madrid] because I have built a young team and I have the feeling that I have not finished my job," Wenger told French radio station RMC.

He continued: "I am not denying it will be a decisive season. If we are not in the title race, we will have to build everything again."

While the Gunners could yet step up their interest in Bordeaux's Moroccan striker Marouane Chamakh, but only should Emmanuel Adebayor leave, Wenger continues to talk about evolution and progression for his squad rather than a radical overhaul. It is, however, a policy which has so far failed to deliver a first Premier League trophy for the cabinet of the impressive 60,000-seater Emirates Stadium.

Nevertheless, reaching the Champions League final of 2006 should certainly not be underestimated. Indeed, but for some better fortune along with cooler heads in the games which mattered, both domestic and European silverware could have been safely locked away since.

Wenger, whose side finished fourth last term, reaching both the semi-finals of the FA Cup and Champions League, added: "People always expect more than the previous season, but I already put the pressure on myself."

While harbouring no intention of leaving his post just yet, Wenger, who turns 60 in October, accepts he cannot go on forever.

"I am near the end of my career, I won't be coach for another 10 years," reflected Wenger, who fended off some stern criticism from sections of the Gunners fans last season.

"I have been at the club for 12 years and I do not want to go on even one year too much."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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Topics:
Arsenal
Emmanuel Adebayor
European News
Football
Premier League
UEFA Champions League
FA Cup

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