Arsene Wenger is a former football player turned manager that is best known for his time as the coach of the London-based football club, Arsenal. The Frenchman, who was appointed to the position in 1996, went on to become the club’s most successful and longest-serving manager, winning three Premier League titles and seven FA Cups, before stepping down from the position in 2018.
For his contributions to football in England, Wenger, who gained a reputation for his investment in youth players rather than buying expensive already established footballers, was in 2003 awarded the Officer of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II. Read on to find out more about his early and personal life.
On the 22nd of October, 1949, in Strasbourg, France, Arsene Wenger was born as the youngest of three children to his parents; Louise and Alphonse Wenger, who were both entrepreneurs as they owned and ran an automobile spare parts business as well as a bistro.
Due to his work, Wenger’s father maintained a very tight schedule and barely had time to raise his kids. Despite this, he was still able to introduce his son to the game of football at the age of six, as he himself served as the coach of the village team in Duttlenheim.
Arsene Wenger began playing for FC Duttlenheim at the age of 12. By the time he was 16, he was able to break into the team’s first team where despite his young age, he somewhat served as the coach of the team since they did not officially have a coach. As the story goes, Wenger took it upon himself to manage the side, directing teammates in training sessions while also preparing them tactically before the match. Wenger remained with the side until 1969 when he got recruited by then French third division side, Mutzig.
With very little hopes of becoming a full-time professional footballer since his family business was waiting for him to return and run it, in 1971, Wenger enrolled at the University of Strasbourg where he obtained an Economics degree while still playing football on a part-time basis at the semi-professional outfit, Mullhouse. In 1975, he joined ASPV Strasbourg before moving to RC Strasbourg in 1978, where he was signed to take up youth team coaching duties rather than play football, even though he did get to play in a couple of first team matches.
By 1981, Arsene Wenger had earned all his coaching badges and was soon making a name for himself in France with RC Strasbourg’s youth and reserve teams. His ability impressed Ligue 2 Club Cannes manager Jean-Marc Guillou who hired him as his assistant manager in 1983. Wenger stayed in the position for a year before he was hired as manager of Ligue 1 outfit, Nancy.
At Nancy, Wenger proved to be revolutionary as he introduced his players to a healthy diet among other things that helped improve their game. Despite the little finances he had to work with, Wenger was able to sustain the team in the top division for three years before they were eventually relegated in 1987. This, however, did very little to ruin his reputation as he was immediately hired by Monaco whom he guided to the French league title in his first year on the job. He further won the Coupe de France in 1991 before he was sacked from his position in 1994.
That same year, Wenger joined Japanese side Nagoya Grampus Eight whom he stayed with for two years, winning the Emperor’s Cup in 1995 and Japanese Super Cup in 1996 before moving to England to join the London side Arsenal, as the rest became history.
Arsene Wenger’s Net Worth and Salary
During his days as an assistant manager at Cannes, Arsene Wenger was earning £300 pounds per week. After climbing up the ranks in France and spending two years in Japan, he began earning somewhere around £500,000 per year at Arsenal when he agreed to join the club. By 2002, after having made a name for himself in England, winning a number of trophies and providing good competition for Premier League giants Manchester United, Arsenal rewarded him with a deal worth around £2 million per year. That figure kept on going up over the years, reaching a whopping £8 million per year in 2018, before he opted to leave the position.
With such high earnings, it is no surprise that Wenger is said to be worth an estimated £34.1 million ($48 million).
Family – Wife, Daughter
In 2010, Arsene Wenger exchanged vows with his long-term girlfriend, former French Olympic basketball player Annie Brosterhous. It is not clear when exactly the pair began dating, however, far back in 1997, they welcomed their only child, a daughter named Lea Marion Denise Wenger. Wenger’s marriage to Brosterhous, however, lasted to 2015 when the pair separated amid reports that the Arsenal coach was having affair.
In 2017, Wenger was pictured at the graduation ceremony of his daughter from Cambridge University.
Arsene Wenger is most likely to be the tallest person in most rooms he enters, thanks to his very impressive height of 6 feet 3 inches (1.91 m). He further weighs about 75 kg (165 pounds).