Wenger: New contract claims are false

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has described reports that he is set to be offered a contract extension at the Emirates Stadium as “absolutely false”.

The Frenchman has just over 12 months left on his current deal and is on the verge of completing his 20th season at the helm of the north London club.

Wenger has come under fire from Gunners fans this term after his side’s title challenge dissipated in the new year, having been top of the table at the end of 2015, but are now in danger of finishing behind fierce local rivals Tottenham for the first time since his appointment.

Speaking in his pre-match press conference ahead of Sunday’s home clash with Aston Villa, the 66-year-old dismissed claims that the club’s majority shareholder, Stan Kroenke, is looking to offer him a two-year extension.

“That is completely wrong, and I don’t know where this information comes from,” Wenger said on Friday. “You can treat that as just an invention. It is absolutely false.”

Wenger is not looking that far ahead, insisting his future in the capital depends on how the team performs next term.

“What I focus on is to respect my contract, and after to envisage what I will do after,” he added.

“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.”

One thing is certain, however. Wenger has not given up hope of pipping Spurs to second place, with the two neighbours separated by just two points going into the last day.

“We want to finish as high as possible, and if possible in front of Spurs of course,” he 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.”