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Sports - May 30, 2017

Wenger meets Stan Kroenke over Arsenal future

Arsene Wenger

Arsene Wenger held a crucial meeting with Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke on Monday, at which the Frenchman’s future was expected to be decided.

The outcome is unclear but the decision rests solely with Wenger and Kroenke and will be relayed to directors at a Tuesday board meeting.

Even on Monday morning it was not known if he would extend a deal that expires this summer or leave after 21 years.

Fresh terms were agreed in principle some months ago, but nothing is signed.

Wenger’s preference has always been to stay, but the determining factor was how he believed the atmosphere around the club would be affected by him doing so.

The 67-year-old has faced unprecedented criticism during a season in which the Gunners finished outside the Premier League’s top four for the first time during his reign.

However, they beat Chelsea on Saturday to win the FA Cup, making Wenger the most successful manager – and Arsenal the most successful team – in the competition’s history.

Although Kroenke has never wavered in his desire for Wenger to remain in charge, certain board members feel the time has come for the Frenchman to leave.

However, all power lies with the American, so Wenger’s main concern is external opposition and the conditions that might create for his players next season.

Wenger has admitted the uncertainty over his position did not help performances on the pitch or the surrounding environment, and that it should have been resolved sooner.

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