In the build up to the game at Old Trafford On Monday, Martin Keown has interviewed Arsene Wenger and covered a range of topics from where his medals are, his favourite F.a cup win to his most memorable game against United, and his opportunities to leave the club. Here's some of the key points of the interview.
"Maybe the first one. The first one was when we won the Double in 1998 against Newcastle. I remember absolutely everything. It was at Wembley which for a guy who comes from France, you know, for me it was all new. It was really something special. The whole stadium…it was an old stadium, but there was a soul in there that was exceptional, the grass was special. Everything was special at Wembley".
"Martin, I don’t even know where they are! That tells you that I don’t look back. Maybe one day I will regret it. I like to think I get more from my career from the human side of it than the medals. I would like to think that when I meet the former players I remember more what kind of people they were than what I won with them".
"Look, I think the most memorable…you were involved in it once. [Laughs] You will be in a better position to talk about it. One was of course that famous incident with the penalty on Van Nistelrooy where you were singled out afterwards. The second one was, what I never forget, we lost the fiftieth game at Man United. That still hurts today. It was certainly the game that hurt us the most, even if we had lost sometimes with a big goal difference (6-1, 8-2 etc.). The fiftieth game will remain forever for me".
"Look, I’m happy to see him now, much more than before. We have gone through some difficult spells in our relationship. In the end it became more peaceful and respectful. Today we are happy to have a good dinner together or a good glass of wine and talk about football and raise above the differences we had before".
"I think the availability of the players changed. We produced after that  players like Fabregas who were less physical than Patrick Vieira, but were still exceptional players. For a while maybe, of course we became slowly a little bit less athletic. What people forget is that we had to build the stadium, to build the stadium we had to create money. Today the weight of that is not important any more, we can compete again to fight for the best players. That was not the case six, seven years ago or five years ago".
"2004, 2005, 2006…I had chances to leave, of course. I went for the club with a challenge to build a new stadium without dropping out of the Champions League three years out of five. That was the financial request. We made it every year. I knew that that period for the club was a very sensitive period and I feel I’ve done my job in a very committed and faithful way".
I think the most interesting quote of the interview was when he said that ,"I get more from my career from the human side of it than the medals", and I think if anyone wanted a singular qoute on why Arsene Wenger is such a unique manager then this quote is it. Could you imagine any other manager saying that? I have a feeling that Mourinho would be sickened to his core hearing something like that. Also the fact that Wenger said that the aim was for Arsenal to qualify for the champions league for 3 out of the 5 seasons. I really think people have underestimated how hard it has been for Arsenal with the stadium move, and for Wenger to stay at Arsenal and take up that challenge when he really could have gone anywhere else in the world only speaks for his class. I get the feeling more and more that when people look back on his reign as manager it will be more defined by his leadership through austerity than it will be his first trophy laiden spell at Arsenal. Anyhow here's a link to the interview on the BBC.
Subjectively, Cosmic Kid.