Per Mertesacker hits back at his Arsenal critics

Wenger has now won the FA Cup a record seven times, but uncertainty hangs over the 67-year-old heading into the close-season.

Arsene Wenger said Arsenal's "spectacular" 2-1 FA Cup final victory over Chelsea was just reward for an outstanding display from his team at the end of a turbulent season.

Chelsea were chasing a Premier League and FA Cup Double, but instead the double was Arsenal's: a record 13th FA Cup success and an unprecedented seventh triumph in the competition for Wenger.

"There's a board meeting on Tuesday, " Wenger said on the pitch before collecting the trophy. Unsurprisingly, Wenger is anxious about publicly discussing whether he expects the north London club to offer a new contract. "I don't know if he can let go". "It would be a bit ridiculous that 20 years depends on one games and the future of the club depends on one games, we will see more next week".

"It's been an up and down season but to finish it with an FA Cup has to be a successful season", Ramsey said after repeating his final victor against Hull in 2014.

There were concerns from vast swathes of fans about Mertesacker's lack of pace, yet he displayed the required leadership qualities and intelligent reading of the game to keep out Chelsea's attacking triumvirate for most of the game. "That's it. It's not about popularity, it's about competence".

"Not playing Champions League football this year has been big for us but [being back in the fold] can be an attraction when it comes to signing bigger and better players".

He described the criticism he had faced as a "disgrace" in a BBC interview broadcast prior to the final and returned to the theme after lifting the trophy.

He added: "I said it many times, when we hear the word "Arsenal", the first name we think is Arsene Wenger". "I know what I would like to happen, but I don't know exactly what will happen", he said. I have nothing against Antonio, he has done a fantastic job.

"But, once the game starts, as a fan you stand behind the team".

There was a clear handball by Alexis Sanchez before he scored Arsenal's first goal - the referee was standing five yards away and he should have given it.

Diego Costa revived Chelsea's hopes of a repeat of their league and FA Cup double in 2010 when Arsenal keeper David Ospina failed to keep out his deflected shot with 14 minutes left.

He returned to fitness in early 2017 but could not find a way into the side, with his only appearance coming as a substitute in the final league game of the season against Everton following Laurent Koscielny's red card and an injury to Gabriel.

He said that it is not for him to decide the right man to lead the club but he did accept that he was still the man for the Gunners. We will have to improve the squad in both number and quality. "So that means it's a special night for me". Regardless of his decision, I think it was important for him to win this FA Cup.

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