Arsene Wenger reacts during a Champions League match.
Arsene Wenger reacts during a Champions League match. Sven Hoppe

'The beginning of the end for Arsene Wenger'

FORMER Arsenal defender Martin Keown reckons his ex-manager Arsene Wenger (pictured) is in his final stages at the club.

The Gunners boss is already 19 points behind English Premier League leaders Manchester City.

Despite landing the likes of Alexandre Lacazette and Sead Kolasinac last summer, Arsenal continue to struggle.

Rumours over Wenger's future are rife following the recent arrivals of Dortmund's Sven Mislintat as head of recruitment and Barcelona's Raul Sanllehi as head of football relations.

And Keown believes Wenger's time at the Gunners could be at an end - especially if he misses out on Champions League football for a second straight season.

"It is looking like the beginning of the end for Arsene Wenger at Arsenal,” Keown said. "Since signing his new contract, there has been no re-emergence that has allowed Arsenal to compete with the best.

"Arsenal are now in seventh place, behind Burnley, and I am losing patience watching them. They've become a cup team.

"The situation with Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil has not helped. If the team continues to lack a cutting edge, (a top-four finish) is not going to happen.

"Whatever happens, Wenger must do the right thing for the football club.”

The Gunners need to bounce back from a disappointing 0-0 draw with West Ham in midweek when they take on Newcastle at home Friday night (AEST).