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Wednesday 1 October 2014

Arsenal sense of style ranks as Wenger's biggest legacy

Jack Pitt-Brooke

Published 22/12/2012 | 05:00

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Had the world ended yesterday, Arsene Wenger would have looked back on his stylistic legacy with pride.

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Wenger has been Arsenal manager for 16 years now and has left a very deep imprint on the club.

Asked how he felt about reports emanating from central America that the world might end, Wenger joked that his apocalypse had already been and gone: "Our Mayan calendar was at Bradford!"

It was not the trophies, the unbeaten season – 2003-04 – or the youth development which Wenger identified as his proudest achievement at Arsenal, but the commitment to attractive football.

"Our legacy will be our style of play," Wenger said. "A way to see football. A way to see the development of the game and overall a happy attitude towards the game."

Arsenal is certainly a much bigger club now than in 1996 and Wenger also takes pride in that.

"I believe as well the club has grown since I arrived," he said.

"When I arrived, the club was at Highbury with no training ground and 80 employees; today we are nearly 500 in a big stadium and big training centre. And we are a world-known club. We have been consistent at the top level."

As it happens, the world is still here and Arsenal play at Wigan today when Wenger faces Roberto Martinez, a manager trying to leave his own imprint of "a way to see football". (© Independent News Service)

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