ARSENAL MANAGER ARSENE Wenger insists another arduous off-season has not pushed him closer to retirement.
The Frenchman was powerless to prevent the loss of Robin van Persie to Manchester United during the transfer window and admitted it was ‘strange’ to see his former captain opening his account for Sir Alex Ferguson’s side with a fabulous volley in the 3-2 win over Fulham.
With Alex Song also having departed last month, Wenger could be forgiven for thinking he faces a forlorn task at Arsenal. But Wenger, 62, is adamant retirement remains far from his thoughts.
“There are still miles in my legs,” he said ahead of Sunday’s English Premier League meeting with Liverpool at Anfield.
“In life it is like you are going on a mission and it does not cross my mind to finish. You work as long as you can.”
Despite the purchases of proven internationals Lukas Podolski, Santi Cazorla and Olivier Giroud, Arsenal have started the new season sluggishly with consecutive goalless draws against Sunderland and Stoke City.
Wenger feels motivated by the prospect of building a new squad capable of ending the club’s well documented seven-year wait for a trophy, even if the task has been made more difficult with last season’s top goalscorer now in the colours of a rival.
“Yes, I have to rebuild – but to rebuild is exciting,” Wenger said. ”I would have preferred to have kept van Persie though. There are not 100 players in the world who can score 30 goals in the Premier League.
“It was a fantastic goal he scored (against Fulham). The quality of the finish was tremendous, but it was a strange feeling for me… he had the wrong shirt on.”