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Thursday 25 May 2017

Redknapp: Wenger will step down soon

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger

Harry Redknapp expects Arsene Wenger to call time on his 21-year Arsenal career at the end of the season.

The Frenchman is under increasing pressure after six defeats in nine games across all competitions and said after Saturday's 3-1 loss at West Brom that he had made a decision on his future, with his contract up in the summer.

He did not reveal what verdict he had arrived at but indicated the public would find out "very soon".

It has been reported a compromise deal could be in the offing, with the existing two-year contract offer downgraded to a 12-month deal.

But Redknapp, a North London rival of Wenger's during his time at Tottenham, said he felt the end was close. "I would think so, yes," he Redknapp. "He's had a fantastic career. He has been a great manager for Arsenal. Everyone has got great respect for him, what he's achieved over the years.

"But I think maybe now it is time for a change. Even from Arsenal's point of view, it's time for a new brush to come in and brighten the place up and have a new manager come in.

"I'd hate for him to get chased out of there every week by the fans, he doesn't deserve that but I do think it is time maybe now for a change."

Baggies boss Tony Pulis was more upbeat about the 67-year-old's prospects.

"He's probably the greatest manager Arsenal have ever had but they could still finish in top four and win an FA Cup final. That's a great deal for Arsenal football club," said Pulis.

"Arsene will recognise the situation he's in. I still think he'll stay. Yes they want (to win) a championship and do better and I think he will believe he can still do that."

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