Arsene Wenger says staying at Arsenal for 22 years may have been his biggest mistake and that he regrets sacrificing so much for the job.
Asked what his biggest mistake in his career was, Wenger said: “Perhaps staying at the same club for 22 years. I’m someone who likes new things, likes change. But I also like challenges. I was a little bit of a prisoner to my challenge each time.”
Wenger added that he has yet to decide what to do in the future and that he may need another two to three months to figure it out.
And he said the sacrifices he had to make for so long was one of the hardest parts of being a manager.
“I regret having sacrificed everything I did because I realise I’ve hurt a lot of people around me. I’ve neglected a lot of people. I’ve neglected my family, I’ve neglected many people close to me,” he said. “But deep down though, the obsessed man is selfish in his pursuit of what he loves. He misses out on a lot of other things. But it’s a bone to chase at the same time.
“Often, I’m asked if Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira will be good managers and I always answer yes. They have all the qualities; they are intelligent, they know football, they have excellent skillset, but do they want to sacrifice what needs to be sacrificed to do only that? It’s an obsession which bounces around your head day and night.
“You wake up at 3 a.m. thinking, ‘Should I play this one or that one? Is this way or that way the best to win this match?’ It’s a job that you never leave.”