04/22 09:42 CDT Arsenal beats West Ham 4-1 at start of Wenger's farewell
Arsenal beats West Ham 4-1 at start of Wenger's farewell
LONDON (AP) --- Arsene Wenger saw Arsenal claim a 4-1 victory over West Ham on
Sunday in his first game since announcing his 22-year managerial reign will
finish at the end of the season.
That Arsenal remains sixth in the Premier League is why support for Wenger has
drained among the north London club's fan base.
When Wenger stepped onto the pitch before kickoff there was no acknowledgment
of the 68-year-old Frenchman from the stadium announcer. And fans only chanted
about the only manager of the club many have ever known in response to taunts
from West Ham supporters.
It was a tepid first half from Arsenal, showing just why the team is 30 points
behind newly crowned champion Manchester City.
The hosts only came to life in the second half. But even after Nacho Monreal
netted in the 51st minute, West Ham pulled level through Marko Arnautovic. The
win was only secured with a flurry of goals in the last 10 minutes, with Aaron
Ramsey's strike followed by Alexandre Lacazette's double.
Arsenal's priority is the Europa League, with the semifinal first leg against
Atletico Madrid on Thursday. It's the only realistic path into the Champions
League and the final in Lyon can provide Wenger with the perfect send-off.
Wenger announced on Friday that he had decided to step down next month. But
Arsenal's leadership has sidestepped questions about whether the decision was
because they didn't want Wenger, a three-time Premier League winner with
Arsenal, to complete the final year of his contract.