London: Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has said his commitment to the club helped ensure the bank loans which were used to build the Emirates Stadium.
Arsenal fans are reportedly set to stage a protest this weekend after a disappointing season where Arsenal saw their title hopes fade away.
“When we built the stadium the banks demanded that I signed for five years,” the 66-year-old Frenchman was quoted as saying by the BBC on Friday.
“Do you want me to say how many clubs I turned down during that period?”
The construction of the 390 million pound stadium began in 2004 — when Arsenal won their last English Premier League title — and ended in 2006.
“The banks wanted the technical consistency to guarantee that we have a chance to pay them back,” he said.
Wenger also claimed that people who are presently criticizing him for not winning the title in the last 12 years have gone too far.
“I did commit and I stayed, and under very difficult circumstances,” he said.
“So for me to come back and, on top of that, (critics) reproach me for not having won the championship during that period, it is a bit overboard.”