Arsene Wenger joked that he should have announced his retirement every week having experienced an outpouring of goodwill towards him from the football world.
Having had been feted at Manchester United and Leicester City, the supporters of Huddersfield Town also honoured the Frenchman’s 22-year Arsenal tenure on the occasion of his final game in charge of the Gunners.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s first half strike secured a 1-0 win for the visitors, their first points on the road in 2018, and afterwards, Wenger took the opportunity to thank his players and staff and to wish his successor all the best.
“It’s a special day,” he told his final press conference. “To keep my sense of humour, I should have announced every week that I leave because people have been so nice with me since I said that.
“I would like to thank people here. Our fans. Huddersfield people have shown a lot of class.
“It was a great day, a happy day. They celebrated staying in the Premier League, it was my last game. After 1,205 it’s maybe time.
“It was a special day and the players wanted to win the game. Overall I would like to thank everybody.
“I had fantastic human experiences at the club, above the results. I believe that it was a human adventure for 22 years and I wish everyone well and a lot of success to my club in the future.”
Prior to the match, Wenger took to the pitch to bow in front of the travelling support. The boss said it was a mark of respect for those who spend their hard-earned cash following the team.
“It was spontaneous,” he admitted. “I know that we disappointed this season, the away fans.
“Many of them live the whole week, save money to travel up to games. It’s part of respect we have.
“They had disagreements with me, which I can accept. But we had one thing in common, we love Arsenal football club. I wanted to share that with them today.”
He added: “I feel that I got a lot of respect, not just from our fans – but from England. I loved English football, but I learned as well to love England over 22 years.
“You do not stay in a country that long if you don’t like it. So for me as well that is a good return from people who love football here.”
Wenger also took the opportunity to speak of his pride at the work he’s done at Arsenal since joining in 1996.
“I’m very proud of having contributed a little bit to give some good moments to people who love the club.
“What will remain I don’t know. The victories, the defeats, but I think what will remain is the formidable human aspect of the last 22 years. It was special. I will cherish that.”