Wenger looks for 'what is beautiful in man'

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger discussed topics from religion to the nature of time in an interview with French publication L'Equipe.

Arsene Wenger has described the goal of his work in football management  as being "to get out there what is beautiful in man" in a wide-ranging interview with L'Equipe's Sport and Style magazine.

The Arsenal boss touched on topics from his religious faith to his "scary" relationship with time in the piece.

Wenger also labelled himself as naive – an accusation that some detractors have levelled towards aspects of his Arsenal reign over recent years.

"I am only a guide," he said when explaining his relationship with his players.

"I allow others to express what they have in them. I have not created anything. I am a facilitator of what is beautiful in man.

"I define myself as an optimist. My constant battle in this business is to get out there what is beautiful in man. We can at this level portray me as naive.

"At the same time, it allows me to believe it and it often gives me reason."

Wenger revealed that he no longer reads from a book of prayers ahead of matches, as he did earlier in his career, before giving his thoughts on the importance of religion.

"Unfortunately today, it [the prayers] works less! At the same time, fortunately, it means that my team does not necessarily need God to win," he said.

"The only time possible for happiness is the present. The past gives regrets and future uncertainties.

"Man quickly realised this and created the religion. It forgives him what he has done wrong in the past and told him for the future not to worry."