Media.net ad unit 4

Why the Arsenal board have finally got a decision right!

  I believe despite their best efforts the Arsenal board have got it right.The press didn't see Unai Emery as a candidate to replace the outgoing Arsene Wenger until really late in the day, it was pretty much a done deal as soon as the story broke. After years of deliberating and steady decline the board finally and respectfully moved Wenger out. Despite his legendary status it needed doing, last season was the first time a Wenger managed Arsenal team missed out on Champions League qualification, they missed again this season and were even further away.
  The thing that the board has got absolutely spot on is not that they have replaced Arsene Wenger with Unai Emery, they haven't, they have replaced Arsene Wenger with Head Coach Unai Emery, Head of Recruitment Sven  Mislintat and Head of Football Relations Raul Sanllheri. Mislintat has been in place since last November and Sanllehi since February, so it seems likely that Ivan Gazidis  has been planning Wenger's exit for some time and once the season end result started to become clear he made his move. Both Mislintat and in particular Sanllehi will have played a big role in Emery's appointment and moving forwards will become much more prominent in moving the club forwards. Mislintat has been at Borrusia Dortmund for nine years and his track record is fantastic. He can take full credit for signing young Japanese player Shinji  Kagawa, and played a key role in bringing the following luminaries to the club Mats Hummels, Neven Subotic, Sven Bender and Robert Levandowski. Most recently he was instrumental in unearthing Ousame Dembele for a fee of fifteen million euros. Sanllehi has been a director of football at Barcelona since 2007 and played a key role in the Alexis Sanchez signing for Barcelona from Udinese in 2011. Most famously though he was the pivotal player when Barcelona signed Neymar. Sanllehi actually  travelled to Brazil to negotiate with the player and his father.
  Unlike Wenger, Emery is happy with this set up, he has always worked as the Head Coach and has had success in this role. People always look to his Europe League successes with Seville but probably his greatest achievement was three successive third place finishes with Valencia on a very modest budget. It is also assumed that he wasn't a success with the ultra financially dominant Paris St Germain but he has just won all four domestic trophies.
  However all that being said Emery has a very difficult job ahead of him. It has been mooted that he only has a net fifty million pounds to improve a squad that is already miles off the pace. If he wants more money he will have to generate it through player sales. This won't be easy though  it is an ageing squad and already thin on numbers. In January, Arsenal basically swapped Walcott, Giroud and Coqueline for Aubameyang, a decision that so far has proven to be spectacularly successful. Aubameyang's  ten goals and four assists in thirteen games is a very good return on investment. Aaron Ramsey with only twelve months left on his contract is arguably Arsenal's most bankable asset but it is believed that Emery is keen to base his team around Ramsey. Where are the positives for Emery then? Certainly the attacking style of Arsene Wenger has left an unbalanced squad, which does mean that Emery has plenty of options in attack. He looks short of numbers in midfield and certainly short of midfielders with natural discipline but it looks like he will be resigning Jack Wilshire. The defence has some good young players available but they look poorly coached and unprotected during games. Two years ago Hector Bellerin looked like he was going to be world class  but he has certainly regressed. Emery though likes to play attacking possession football but from a structured base. This will give Arsenal a more solid platform to play from and leave his defenders less exposed. If he coaches the team as well as he is capable and delivers some rollickings  he could get some quick results. On first look though I would say Arsenal need a centre midfielder, a centre back and a goalkeeper but in today's market to get the right quality that's one hundred and fifty  million pounds not fifty million pounds. Another positive for Emery is that a lot of players aren't performing at the levels they're capable of on a consistent basis, they look lethargic and undisciplined, if Emery gets them fitter and taking collective responsibility there is the basis of a good team already in place.
I think Arsenal fans are going to like their new manager, but the English Premier league has changed and Unai Emery has a mountain to climb. However if this is the start of the ascent Arsenal have put themselves in a great position

No comments