Cape Town - Former Arsenal left-back Nigel Winterburn believes that manager Arsene Wenger chose the right time to leave the club.
ALSO READ: Wenger announces Arsenal departure
The 68-year-old shockingly announced his departure from the Gunners on Friday after spending 22-years at the London side.
The Frenchman will leave the Arsenal at the end of the season with having won three Premier League titles and seven FA Cup crowns.
"The last four or five league games, the crowds are well down, I think it has run its natural course," Winterburn said as quoted by Sky Sports website.
"Wenger has been absolutely amazing for Arsenal Football Club. He has kept the club relatively successful, but the one thing the fans wanted him to do was to get this Premier League title challenge and that hasn’t happened.
Winterburn continued: "It feels like the right time, and he will be remembered fondly at this club.
"I think when people look back, they will really appreciate what he has done.
"I think it’s right, everyone has a clear picture from now until the end of the season, they need to win the Europa League to get into the Champions League."
Arsenal looks set to miss out on a top four finish but still have a chance of qualifying for the Champions League.
A two-leg Europa League semi-final clash with La Liga giants Atletico Madrid is set for kick-off next week (Thursday, April 26) at the Emirates Stadium.
"I think first of all you have to realise when Arsene Wenger came into the football club, the players and staff knew very, very little about him," the former Arsenal left-back said.
"But when you start to train with a manager, when he starts to set his team out with the encouragement he gives you and the freedom to play, I absolutely fell in love with playing for Arsenal again with that freedom."