- Arsene Wenger seen for the first time after deciding his future
- The Frenchman has been the Gunners manager for 22 years
- Arsenal will play Atletico Madrid in the Europa League semis
Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger has been pictured for the first time since he decided to resign as manager of the club.
The 68-year-old announced he would step away as coach at the end of the season after 22 years in charge.
Wenger won three Premier League titles and seven FA Cup finals during his incredible tenure.
The Frenchman was pictured leaving the Gunners training ground at London Colney in his car.
Wenger said in a statement to reveal his departure: "After careful consideration and following discussions with the club, I feel it is the right time for me to step down at the end of the season.
"I am grateful for having had the privilege to serve the club for so many memorable years.
"I managed the club with full commitment and integrity.
"I want to thank the staff, the players, the Directors and the fans who make this club so special.
"To all the Arsenal lovers take care of the values of the club.
"My love and support for ever."
The club's chiefs have confirmed they will appoint Wenger's successor as soon as possible with the likes of Carlo Ancelotti, Leonardo Jardim, Thomas Tuchel and Luis Enrique among the candidates.
Wenger was appointed manager in 1996 winning three Premier League titles including the unbeaten run of the 2003-04 season and also won seven FA Cup titles.
However the Champions League has continued to elude the Frenchman and the closest he came was when he took Arsenal to the final in 2006 but lost to Barcelona.
His final game as Arsenal's manager is on Sunday, May, 13, away at Huddersfield, with his last home game coming seven days earlier on May 6.
Old rival Jose Mourinho led the tributes, stating: "If he's happy I'm happy, if he's sad, I'm sad, I always wish the best for my opponents, I always wish the best, so for me that's the point.
"If he's happy with the decision he makes and looks forward to the next chapter of his career and his life I'm really happy for him. If he's sad, I'm sad.
"I'm pretty sure we as a club and especially because Mr Wenger and Arsenal were for many many years the biggest rivals of Sir Alex's era, I'm pretty sure that we as a club will show Mr Wenger the respect he deserves. I hope he doesn't retire from football.”
And Sir Alex Ferguson paid tribute to his longevity.
"I am really happy for Arsene Wenger," he told United's official website .
"I have great respect for him and for the job he has done at Arsenal.
"It is great testament to his talent, professionalism and determination that he has been able to dedicate 22 years of his life to a job that he loves.
"In an era where football managers sometimes only last one or two seasons, it shows what an achievement it is to serve that length of time at a club the size of Arsenal.
"I am pleased that he has announced he is leaving at this stage of the season, as he can now have the send-off that he truly deserves.
He is, without doubt, one of the greatest Premier League managers and I am proud to have been a rival, a colleague and a friend to such a great man."
Arsenal will play Atletico Madrid in the semi finals of the Europa League and stand a chance to play Champions League football next season.
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