Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has hinted that the disunity among fans of the club was a factor in his impending exit.
The 68-year-old Frenchman announced on Friday he would step down at the end of the season after almost 22 years at the helm.
A section of Arsenal fans have turned on Wenger as they look set to miss out on a Premier League top-four spot for the second successive season. They finished fifth last season and ended up in the Europa League, in which they have reached the semi-finals.
“The image we gave from our club is not what it is and not what I like,” Wenger, 68, said in his post-match interview after the 4-1 Premier League win over West Ham.
The Gunners finished outside the top four last term for the first time since Wenger arrived at the club, and are now in sixth place, 11 points behind fourth-placed Tottenham, with four matches remaining.
Now Arsenal have to win the Europa League to reach next season’sChampions League.
Fans have held “Wenger out” signs at Arsenal matches, while there have been empty seats at home games in recent months.
“I was not tired,” Wenger added, when talking about his decision to quit.
“Personally I believe this club is respected all over the world, much more than in England.
“The fans did not give me the image of unity I want all over the world and that was hurtful because I think the club is respected”.