X

Saturday 23
February

Arsenal

Emery reveals Arsenal theory

23rd November 2018, 07:43 by Alex Jack

Unai Emery has claimed Arsenal were in decline towards the end of Arsene Wenger's 22-year tenure and he "had to change things".

The Gunners are set to resume Premier League action following the international break with a trip to Bournemouth on Sunday, looking to extend a 16-match unbeaten run in all competitions.

They failed to finish in the top four for the first time under Wenger in his final two campaigns, a situation former Paris Saint-Germain boss Emery feels was down to losing the "defensive structure".

Emery told Marca: "I met once with him, and little else. I respect him a lot, but no matter how much info he gave me, I had to change things.

"I told the players: 'We started at kilometre zero'. Even now, four months later, I still say it: 'We are in the beginning!'."

Emery feels Arsenal lost sight of a key aspect during Wenger's closing seasons.

"Before Wenger arrived, Arsenal celebrated the 1-0 (win) and was based on defensive solidity. Then with Arsene, joy was turned into attack, with players of good standing, and the perfect combination was 'The Invincibles' (when Arsenal won the Premier League undefeated in 2003-2004)," he added.

"But over time, only technical quality and offensive freedom were taken care of, and the team lost the defensive structure.

"What I want is to unite both essences and be more competitive. The Arsenal was in decline. We had to stop it and start climbing."

Arsenal head to Bournemouth looking to close the gap on north London rivals Tottenham, who are three points clear in fourth place.

While Emery's side have also impressed in their Europa League campaign, the Gunners head coach is keeping attention on their key target.

"The Premier League is our priority, and our objective in terms of the table is to finish in the top four," he added on www.arsenal.com.

"The club wants to return to Europe's top club competition which is the Champions League, and we have two opportunities by which to do that - one is the Premier League, and the other is the Europa League, because obviously you qualify by winning that competition.

"Both are very difficult, but we want to ensure we perform the best we can on both fronts.

"At the same time, every competition where there's a title up for grabs is important and that counts for the two domestic cup competitions as well."

Emery also revealed a "third objective" of transmitting a "connection with the fans", who were so divided under towards the end of Wenger's tenure.

"We want it to convey energy, desire about winning and also a sense of solidity," he went on to say. "Within that we want to see individual footballers growing and developing.

"We want to create that kind of atmosphere so it's about both how we finish in the table and also in terms of creating a team both individually and collectively that has motivation.

"We want Arsenal to convey energy and hunger."

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Alex Jack is a Yorkshireman with Scottish connections and well versed in a number of sports. A Leeds United supporter, who also enjoys both codes of rugby. Leeds Rhinos is where you can find him in the summer, while Alex is an avid supporter of Scottish rugby union.

More Arsenal

Arsenal

Two more matches for banned striker

23rd February 2019, 08:57

After getting an extra two match ban from UEFA, Alexandre Lacazette will miss Arsenal's Europa League last-16 fixtures with Rennes.

Arsenal

Emery allays Koscielny fears

22nd February 2019, 14:49

Arsenal boss Unai Emery is optimistic captain Laurent Koscielny will be fit for Sunday's Premier League visit of Southampton.

Arsenal

Ozil not a certain Arsenal starter - Emery

22nd February 2019, 07:20

Mesut Ozil returned as Arsenal progressed in the Europa League - but Unai Emery insists he is not a certain starter every week.

Arsenal

Duo hand Arsenal timely boost

21st February 2019, 08:29

Aaron Ramsey and Sokratis Papastathopoulos have returned to training ahead of Arsenal's Europa League clash with BATE Borisov.

Arsenal

Emery demands fit Ozil

21st February 2019, 04:22

Mesut Ozil needs to shake off his minor injuries and illnesses to earn a regular place in the Arsenal side, Unai Emery has said.

Arsenal

Thuram to be watched by Arsenal and PSG

20th February 2019, 10:25

Arsenal will make a fresh check on Guingamp starlet Marcus Thuram on Wednesday when he faces Bordeaux in Ligue 1.

Recent Sport Headlines

Chelsea

Sarri wants more time at Chelsea

23rd February 2019, 09:19

Maurizio Sarri doesn't understand why his job at Chelsea is precarious when he considers Pep Guardiola's first season at Man City.

Watford

Gracia hails his Watford side

23rd February 2019, 09:16

After thrashing Cardiff, Javi Gracia insisted high-flying Watford can achieve "something different" this season.

Liverpool

Klopp backs Solskjaer for United role

23rd February 2019, 09:01

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp believes Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be the permanent successor to Jose Mourinho at Manchester United.

Manchester United

Ferguson offered United chance

23rd February 2019, 08:59

Sir Alex Ferguson could deliver Manchester United's team talk ahead of the Liverpool clash, according to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Arsenal

Two more matches for banned striker

23rd February 2019, 08:57

After getting an extra two match ban from UEFA, Alexandre Lacazette will miss Arsenal's Europa League last-16 fixtures with Rennes.

Manchester City

City refute allegations

23rd February 2019, 08:56

Manchester City have again said there is an "organised and clear" attempt to damage the club's reputation.

Tottenham Hotspur

Pochettino knows Burnley clash vital

23rd February 2019, 08:54

Mauricio Pochettino has billed Saturday's clash with Burnley as a "final" in a vital week in terms of the Premier League title race.

Chelsea

Chelsea launch appeal

23rd February 2019, 08:52

Chelsea have launched an appeal against the two-window transfer registration ban and have refuted the findings from FIFA.