Arsenal boss identifies his successor

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Arsene Wenger believes Nagoya Grampus Eight manager, Dragan Stojkovic, would be the perfect man to succeed him at Arsenal.

The Serbian was a player of some repute and is widely considered as one of the best attackers to have represented Yugoslavia, as well as Red Star Belgrade.

'Piksi' Stojkovic spent the twilight of his career in the J-League with Grampus - playing under Wenger before the Frenchman took the managerial post at Arsenal in 1996.

The Arsenal boss still remains friends with his former protegee and has been hugely impressed with the progress he has made as a coach, which includes winning the league with Grampus and being named the J-League Manager of the Year.

Wenger has seen similarities in way Arsenal play to the way Stojkovic sets up his side and has revealed that he would like to see the former Marseille forward take the reigns and the Emirates Stadium one day.

"I would love Stojkovic to be my successor, there are a hundred reasons for that," the Arsenal supremo told Serbian paper Vecernje Novosti.

"Our ideas are the same and we both strive for perfect football. I knew he was going to have teams playing attacking football with many passes… He has done that, showing he will be a great coach. I told him that if he could transmit his football imagination to his players he would fly high."


Wenger has often remained coy about how long he will occupy his position at Arsenal but recently pledged future by signing a contract to keep him at the club until 2014.

It is expected that the 61-year-old will take up a directorial role with Arsenal when he eventually decides to step back from the limelight.

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