Unai Emery is poised to become Arsene Wenger’s successor at Arsenal, with an official announcement expected later this week.
The 46-year-old, who leaves Paris Saint-Germain this summer after two years in the job at the Parc des Princes, has successfully fended off competition from the inexperienced Mikel Arteta.
This is according to the ultra-reliable David Ornstein, correspondent for BBC Sport, who surprised Arsenal fans with the news on Monday evening.
Ornstein revealed that Emery, who has also coached Valencia and Sevilla, was the unanimous choice of Arsenal’s board.
The Spanish coach is not fluent in English but neither he nor the Arsenal hierarchy expect this to be an issue.
There’s been a mixed reaction to the news from Arsenal fans on social media.
Many of them had come around to the idea of the highly-rated Arteta taking the reins at the Emirates Stadium next season and feel slightly disappointed that Emery, who isn’t widely regarded as one of the world’s elite coaches, is set to be named as the club’s new boss.
Arsenal fans feel nervous after watching this video
However, Emery boasts a reasonably impressive CV, winning the Europa League in three successive seasons with Sevilla and sealing a host of major honours with PSG, including Ligue 1 and the French Cup in 2017 and 2018. He also managed to get PSG playing some very attractive football during his spell with the French giants.
One clip of PSG playing out from the back while under pressure against Real Madrid in a pre-season friendly has been doing the rounds over the past 24 hours and it’s extremely impressive. But Arsenal fans are nervous after watching it.
Because they fear that Emery will attempt to get Arsenal’s haphazard defenders and goalkeeper Petr Cech to do the same when he arrives this summer.
Can't blame them for feeling nervous
They think it would lead to disaster with the likes of Rob Holding and Shkodran Mustafi getting it horribly, horribly wrong.
You can hardly blame them for feeling a sense of dread after watching this video. After all, some of Arsenal’s defending has been nothing short of atrocious over the past few seasons.
But maybe Emery can bring out the best in Holding, Mustafi, Cech et all.
Time will tell.