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Perfectionist Wenger demands more from himself

sports Updated: Oct 02, 2009 20:37 IST

Arsene Wenger admits he is never satisified with his own performance as he tries to restore Arsenal to the summit of English and European football.

Wenger became the longest-serving manager in Arsenal's history on Thursday when his tenure in north London stretched to 13 years.

After winning three league titles and four FA Cups, the Frenchman's reign has already ensured he will be remembered as one of the greatest managers to grace the English game.

But despite building a team that went unbeaten through the 2003-04 league campaign, the perfectionist in Wenger means he is never completely happy with his work.

He has had more reason than ever to question himself over the last few seasons as Arsenal's run without a trophy has now reached four years.

"I question myself every day. I try to assess my performance with what I do," Wenger said. I ask 'How I can be better? How can I improve? How can I get this team to achieve what I believe is in the team?'

"I have not exceeded my expectations because I always expect much more.

"My expectation is to win every single football game I manage and I did not do that, so I can never exceed my expectations. There are still more targets to achieve.

"I believe we have consistently managed to be at the top level, within our resources and improving our structures.

"The club is on a new platform and to reach many more targets.

"I believe our structures - new stadium, new training ground, a very young team, a healthy financial situation, we play at the top - means we have all the basics to be successful.

"But of course we want to win trophies because we have worked very hard with this team to be where we are.

"It is down now to us to win the Premier League, the Champions League - those are our targets."

A European trophy remains the only thing missing from Wenger's Arsenal CV - having taken the club to the Champions League final in 2006 and to the semi-finals last season before being outplayed by Manchester United.

Wenger, whose side host Blackburn on Sunday, added: "We were close to being crowned, but that is what is still to achieve.

"Of course it drives me on, but the competition is very high with all the big clubs you have in Europe.

"Our overall performance in the games this season has been quite good, very promising.

"Even when we had little disappointment in two games, the quality of the performance was still there.

"We did transform that disappointment into more desire and came back every time.

"I believe the spirit is there, the quality is there and we know it is a very big and important season for us. I am confident we will do well."