The pre-season journey through the United States is well underway for Arsenal, and while a lot of fans may be focusing on what’s happening on the pitch, we’re more intrigued about what’s going off of it: more specifically, in regards to Unai Emery. No, we aren’t thinking about the culture shock of being a Spaniard in the States, although that would make for a pretty good sitcom.
What does he have to do?
We’re thinking about the uphill task that he faces because, first of all, he’s kind of being pushed to one side as an afterthought. The main priority, or focal point at this moment in time, is the battle between the Kroenkes and the fans. These two sides have been going back and forth for a few weeks now, and if you really want to push the boat out, then they’ve actually been going back and forth for a few months – if not longer.
All the while Emery is the one that is trying to get some business done, and he’s doing so with his hands being tied. It’s not easy for any manager at this level to try and get big business done and we understand that, but it seems to be particularly hard for the Gunners. Emery needs to be given more credit for the job he’s doing, or at the very least, for the job he’s attempting to do.
Just go for it
In terms of his uphill battle, it kind of goes without saying at this point that top four is a minimum requirement – and even then, he can’t afford to have a bad start to the season. We can easily envisage a scenario in with Kroenke panics in the first few months if results are going sideways and fires Emery with the thought being that the fans will be pleased with that. Newsflash: they won’t be.
It’s going to take an almighty effort for Emery to become relevant at this club again, which is a shame, because just twelve months ago the vibe was so different. Arsenal had brought in a series of fresh new players, and it looked like a brand new era was upon us. In the end, though, we’ve just got to wait and see, as this circus of a pre-season continues to leave fans wondering what monster is around the next corner.
What will be considered a success for Unai Emery next season?