Arsenal manager pays tribute to Manchester United boss.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has paid a glowing tribute to retiring Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson on Arsenal’s official site.
The two managers enjoyed one of the most famous rivalries in English football when Wenger took over at Arsenal in 1997 and threatened United’s place as the top team in the country.
Although they exchanged a fair few angry words at the height of their rivalry, Arsenal’s decline in recent seasons has seen a more respectful tone develop between the two coaches, and Wenger was full of praise for Ferguson following news of his retirement after a glittering 26-year career at Old Trafford.
“I would just like to pay tribute to an unbelievable achievement and a fantastic career,” he said. “Basically the achievement is immaculate, when you look at the whole structure and consistency of the achievement. It is, of course, something exceptional.
“It is difficult to imagine English football without him, but it’s now a reality and a fact. Of course the next manager has to fill in and show he has the dimension to do that. It is a big task for the guy who comes in.
“It’s a great void to fill for Manchester United, because the charisma and personality disappears suddenly in a club which has been dominated by it for such a long time.
“It’s not an easy task to replace a person like that.”
Wenger is now the longest-serving manager at any Premier League club, going into his eighteenth year as Gunners boss, with David Moyes ending an eleven-year spell in charge of Everton to replace Ferguson as United manager.
Wenger himself had been rumoured to be nearing an end to his long career with Arsenal, after being lined up by big-spending French giants PSG, though he has remained committed to staying at the Emirates Stadium for at least another year.