Arsene Wenger: Arsenal contract extension rumours 'completely wrong'
LONDON -- Arsene Wenger has rubbished claims that he is set to be offered a contract extension by Arsenal.
Wenger is in his 20th season as Arsenal manager and has one more year left on his contract, but an increasing number of fans have called for him to step down after a disappointing campaign that will end without a trophy.
And The Times reported on Friday that majority owner Stan Kroenke wants to offer him a two-year extension if Arsenal make a good start to next season.
"That is completely wrong, and I don't know where this information comes from," Wenger said at his news conference on Friday. "You can treat that as just an invention. It is absolutely false."
Asked if he wants to extend his contract, Wenger said he has yet to make up his mind about his own future and that the decision will depend on how the team does next season.
"What I focus on is to respect my contract, and after to envisage what I will do after," Wenger said. "I can understand that people are interested in that, but that is not the most important thing. After [next season] I will see where I am personally and where the club stands at the end of my contract."
Criticism of Wenger has grown as Arsenal's challenge to win a first Premier League title since 2004 faltered down the stretch. The Gunners were top of the table going into January, but now look likely to finish behind second-place Tottenham for the first time during Wenger's reign.
And midfielder Aaron Ramsey has admitted in an interview with ESPN FC that Arsenal's season has been a "missed opportunity."
Arsenal need only a draw in their final game against Aston Villa on Sunday to lock up third place, but a win would see them also overtake Tottenham if Spurs lose at already relegated Newcastle.
"We want to finish as high as possible, and if possible in front of Spurs of course," Wenger said. "We'll fight until the end. If we are not second we'll finish third, hopefully. But ideally we want to get in front of Spurs, of course."
Mattias is ESPN FC's Arsenal correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @MattiasKaren.