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21st Apr 2018

Patrick Vieira responds to links to Arsenal job

Jack O'Toole

Former Arsenal captain Patrick Vieira has said that he is ‘flattered’ by reports linking him to a managerial role with the Gunners next season but added that his playing career at the club does not necessarily mean that he will be suited to be the club’s next manager.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger announced on Friday that he would be leaving the club at the end of the season after 22 years at the helm in North London.

The Frenchman won three league titles and seven FA Cups during his time at the club and will look to finish the season strongly as Arsenal prepare for the Europa League semi-final with Atletico Madrid later this month.

Vieira, who is currently managing New York City FC, was asked about managing his former club but said that he is happy in New York.

“I spent nine years at Arsenal which makes the club really special for me,” he told New York radio station WNYE.

“But that is not enough to coach the team. I am always flattered to hear my name linked with different football clubs. That is good for your ego but at the same time, I am happy here.

“We will see what will happen in the next couple of years.”

Former Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti, Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers and ex-Borussia Dortmund manager Thomas Tuchel have all been linked with taking over at the Emirates with Ancelotti hailing Wenger’s decision to resign as great.

“It’s a great decision, but I think it’s the decision Mr Wenger [made] with a lot of respect for the club and also I think the club have shown a lot of respect.

“That is right – Wenger did a fantastic job, and is doing a fantastic job with Arsenal because he is in the semi-final of the Europa League. Great respect and great honour to Arsene.”

Commenting on reports linking with him the Arsenal manager: “I can say I would like to work again, but that depends on me. If I find the right possibility, the right project I would be delighted to continue.”