For many of us, when we mention Arsenal, it is hard to think of a team without Arsene Wenger, the Frenchman who managed the side for 22 years. But his time has come and after he called it quits, the club started off with a recruitment drive to find a replacement. While it was well known that Mikel Arteta was a favourite for the role, the club spoke to Unai Emery and a decision is expected to be confirmed later this week.
If Emery is indeed announced as the manager for Arsenal, this would mean that the Gunners are settling in for another French kiss after Wenger’s departure.
Reports suggest that following an evaluation, the brass at the Emirates felt Emery’s experience as manager gives him an edge over Arteta, who is a former Arsenal player. While Emery was a manager for Valencia, Sevilla and Paris Saint-Germain, Arteta is well known as an assistant coach for Manchester City, a fact which helped tip the scales in Emery’s favour.
The Independent reports that on May 21, it was conveyed to Arteta that the club is going for Emery. The news reportedly spread to some players as well.
While Emery is not a French national, his two-year stint at PSG makes him as close to a French dude as it gets. Emery led PSG to the second spot in the group stage of the Champions League – just behind Arsenal. PSG beat Barcelona 4-0 in the first knockout round, but suffered a historic 6-1 loss subsequently, forcing them to be eliminated.
The new Arsenal manager is expected to be provided with £50m, besides money generated from sales. The funds are pretty much close to what Wenger received to reshape the squad.