Arsene Wenger has claimed he rejected “the whole world” to stay at Arsenal.
Fresh doubts over Wenger’s future have emerged following Sunday’s shocking Carabao Cup defeat to Manchester City.
Speaking ahead of Thursday’s meeting with City, Wenger refused to comment on reports his position will be reviewed in the summer.
But he reiterated his commitment to the cause, insisting he had turned down a number of jobs to stay at the Emirates.
Here we take a look at the jobs Wenger has rejected over the years.
Manchester United – 2001/02
Former United chairman Martin Edwards tried to lure Wenger to Old Trafford after Sir Alex Ferguson announced he would retire.
The Scot would of course reverse that decision but last year, Wenger confirmed the approach.
“I am always very confidential. One day maybe I will get all the contacts I had during my stay at Arsenal and it would make a few chapters. You should ask Martin Edwards,” he said.
“I always question myself. Yes, of course, Manchester United is attractive but am I happy here? The answer was yes.”
Real Madrid – 2004, 2006, 2009
The Arsenal boss revealed Real tried to snap him up on three occasions and did concede a move to the Bernabeu was a big attraction.
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez made an approach in 2004 to appoint Wenger and the Arsenal manager claimed at the time that he would have to be really desperate to go to the Bernabeu.
“If tomorrow I’m in the streets with no job, I will not turn Madrid down. I have no desire to leave here,” said Wenger at the time. “I’m happy where I am and I rate what I have. My target is to develop this club and the team and I feel I still have a big job to do here.”
The closest Wenger came to leaving Arsenal was believed to be in 2006 when he met presidential candidate Villar Mir.
His campaign was around meeting Wenger, who had just lost the Champions League final and knew finances would be restricted ahead of the Emirates move.
Wenger met Mir and was offered a contract but Mir ended up losing the election.
In 2009, despite admiring Real, he made a promise to Arsenal’s youngsters that he would stay in north London.
“Real is the club of my childhood. When I was a kid, watching those guys in white, winning everything, then of course I am attracted by that club, but I have a pact with the young players of my team, and I want to succeed with that bet,” Wenger said.
“I identified what was important in my job: freedom. Here, I have it.
“I could have earned bigger wages at Real, but I earn a good living in London. At my age, money can’t play a key role.
“If I left for Real, I would have tried to filter through my philosophy, re-organized everything. I could have given foundations to the club’s structure.”
Bayern Munich – 1995, 2009
The Frenchman was lined up by Bayern after they axed Jurgen Klinsmann in 2009.
Bayern were reportedly willing to let Wenger name his own terms and offer him a huge transfer kitty.
But Wenger rejected the approach to remain at the Emirates.
Uli Hoeness said: “From Japan he went to Arsenal and over the years, whenever we were looking for a new coach, Wenger was always one we considered.
“He’s a very serious person, very strong and has a very good idea about the game.
“He has always remained loyal to Arsenal which is fantastic behaviour. But it is true we wanted him at Bayern a few times.”
Manchester City – 2009
Reports suggested City tried to flex their financial muscle to bring in Wenger.
City had started to assert themselves with the arrival of Robinho following the Abu Dhabi takeover.
They wanted to make their mark with a big-name boss too but Wenger said no.
Is he regretting that now?
Paris Saint-Germain – 2011, 2012, 2014
As with the other clubs he said no too, Wenger’s love for Arsenal saw him reject PSG.
The opportunity to return to France would likely have appealed but Wenger reportedly turned them down three times.
Wenger did not deny meeting Paris Saint Germain in November 2012 when the French club’s owner Sheikh Hamad-Al-Thani met him at the Hotel Monceau.
“I like to come to Paris. It’s a city I love, it’s my country, a country I love,” he said.
“I know well the owners (of PSG), but I feel always I remained loyal to Arsenal Football Club because I think it’s a club that has the qualities I love. And, that’s why.”
England – 2000, 2016
The Gunners chief was heavily linked with England on multiple occasions – particularly following Roy Hodgson’s exit after Euro 2016.
He appeared to confirm he held talks but opted against taking the Three Lions post, having been installed as their No.1 choice.
Asked about England’s interest, he said: “Yes but you know, I think I have shown I respect my contracts and I rate loyalty highly.
“I always did that with Arsenal and I have one more year to go so I was not available anyway.”
A full 10 years earlier, he said he rejected England because he doesn’t think a foreigner should hold the post.
After Euro 2000, there were calls for Wenger to come in but with former Arsenal chief David Dein high up in the FA, England moved for Sven-Goran Eriksson.
It is claimed Dein, wanting to keep Wenger for Arsenal, urged the FA to go for Eriksson when others in the FA hierarchy wanted Wenger.
China – 2017
Wenger turned down a huge £30million-a-year offer to move to China.
He was sounded out with an offer to become the highest-paid manager in world football – DOUBLE what Pep Guardiola is on at Manchester City.
But Wenger went on to sign a new two-year deal at the Emirates.