Arsenal still waiting on Wenger

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The Independent Online
Arsenal have yet to discover when their manager-elect, Arsene Wenger, will take control at Highbury, according to the Frenchman's current club, Grampus Eight.

The Gunners played Borussia Monchengladbach in a Uefa Cup first-round first leg tie at Highbury last night still under the control of the caretaker- manager, Stewart Houston, who may join George Graham at Leeds United.

The Japanese club said negotiations over the date of Wenger's departure have not yet been completed. "Talks between him and the team have been going on," the Grampus spokesman, Masaharu Teshima, said.

"We are in the final stages of negotiations. The biggest question now is when he leaves. We will have problems if he leaves the team early.

"Who will replace Wenger? When can we have a new coach? These are the problems which need to be cleared."

Teshima said Grampus, who play in Japan's J-League, wanted the 47-year- old former Monaco coach to see out his two-year contract, which expires in January.

Wenger played 11 professional matches at Strasbourg before launching a highly successful career in management, first with the north-eastern French club, then at nearby Nancy.

He was appointed chief coach at Monaco in 1987, guiding them to the French title after signing the now England coach, Glenn Hoddle, and the former England striker Mark Hateley.

Arsenal, who sacked Bruce Rioch the week before the Premiership season began, are currently eighth in the table under the caretaker stewardship of Houston following Saturday's 2-2 draw with Aston Villa.

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