Arsene Wenger
Wenger (R) has decided to leave Arsenal after 22-years at the end of the season. In this picture, Arsene Wenger, Manager of Arsenal looks on ahead of the Premier League match between Arsenal and West Ham United at Emirates Stadium on April 22, 2018, in London, England. Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Arsene Wenger’s decision to leave Arsenal at the end of the season, which was revealed on Friday has dominated headlines throughout the weekend with speculation ranging from whether it was the club’s decision or the manager’s to who will fill the massive boots vacated by the Frenchman.

The Gunners manager will bring to an end his 22-year reign at the club, which has seen them win the Premier League on three occasions, which includes going an entire season unbeaten in 2003/04 and lifting the FA Cup seven times — a record for one manager.

Wenger revealed last season that he has no intention to stop managing even if he quits Arsenal and after announcing his departure on Friday, he is yet to confirm his plans for the future. It has been just over 72 hours since he made the announcement and David Dein, Arsenal’s former vice-chairman, who was the man that appointed the French coach as the north London club’s manager in 1996, revealed he has already been inundated with a number of calls with offers to manage.

Wenger commands respect throughout the football world with current and former managers acknowledging his impact not only on the English game, but also world football. It is certain that a number of clubs will be interested in employing the Frenchman.

Dein also revealed that the Arsenal manager considered ending his tenure at the end of last season, but he felt a responsibility to stay as there were number of young players coming through from the academy to the first-team and hence decided to stay and provide continuity.

“I had calls from various people on Saturday asking ‘can I speak to Arsene?’” Dein said, as quoted by The Sun. “The question is whether he will want to do it anymore. It’s getting more and more difficult and it’s become a bit of a pressure cooker.”

“This decision has been coming. At the end of last season I was discussing with him whether he was going to stay or leave and he was a bit undecided."

“It was definitely an option for him to leave last year but he felt responsible for the players coming through and decided to stay,” he explained.

“But in the last few weeks I felt it was getting more difficult for him, particularly with the team results, and I thought then it was unlikely that he was going to stay on after the end of the season.”

It is no secret that Wenger has been coveted by the biggest clubs in Europe at some point during his Arsenal reign. Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and the England national team have come calling, but he rejected all approaches to remain committed to the Gunners.

Dein is certain that he will have similar offers once his time with Arsenal comes to an end, but it remains to be seen if he wants to continue the grind of being a manager or potentially move up to a directorial role.

“Over the last few years he has been approached by some of the biggest clubs in the world,” Dein added. “Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain, the [England] national team… they all wanted him at some stage.”

“He’s going to be 69 in October but he keeps himself extraordinarily fit. He’s the same weight as when I first met him, he’s got a very active mind and such a knowledge of the game.

“Life without Arsenal is going to be tough for him initially. It’s a way of life and he will feel there is unfinished business,” he said.