Let’s look at Unai Emery’s previous European semi-finals…

For Arsenal to advance to this year’s Europa League Final, they must do what has only happened once to Unai Emery in 5 occasions, beat him in a European Semi Final.

2011-2012
Atlético Madrid 4-2 Valencia
Valencia 0-1 Atlético Madrid

Unai Emery did great work at Valencia at a time the club were struggling in debt. For years he kept them competitive, taking them back into the Champions League despite having to sell the likes of David Villa, Juan Mata and David Silva.

With Valencia cemented in third in the table, the pressure was on Atletico Madrid, they needed to lift the trophy to qualify for the CL. In the same year he got to the last 4 of the Copa Del Rey, this was a so near yet so far season.

2013-2014
Sevilla 2-0 Valencia
Valencia 3-1 Sevilla (win on away goals)

His first season at Sevilla parallels his debut campaign at Villarreal. Like now he had to knock out his former employers to get to a final. Like now he also won the first leg. Like we have to do, Valencia had to fightback in the second leg and were seconds away from completing their comeback till Sevilla got an away goal with seconds left.

2014-2015
Sevilla 3-0 Fiorentina
Fiorentina 0-2 Sevilla

Like now Unai Emery had the pressure of knowing the Europa League was his only route to qualifying for the Champions League. Like last week, the pressure didn’t affect his team, as Sevilla won both games against the Italians comfortably

2015-2016
Shakhtar Donetsk 2-2 Sevilla
Sevilla 3-1 Shakhtar Donetsk
Emery and Sevilla became the first manager and club to win three consecutive UEFA Cups/Europa Leagues. The pressure was huge on Emery.

Struggling in La Liga (they finished 7th) retaining their trophy was again their only route into the Champions League. They would beat Liverpool in the Final.

Incredibly they had qualified for the CL despite not winning once away from home in Spain that season.

2018- 2019
Arsenal 3-1 Valencia
Valencia 2-4 Arsenal

For the second time Emery had to knock out his former employers to advance to the final, ironically against the only club he failed in the semi-finals with.

Originally a goal down at the Emirates a late Aubameyang goal gave us a two-goal margin to take to Spain. Auba scored a hat trick in the Mestalla.

So Emery has proven he can handle the pressure of having to win the Europa to qualify for the CL, twice doing that for Sevilla.

This will be the third time he meets a former employer in the semi-final, having twice knocked out Valencia. This will be the third time he meets English opposition in this competition, having knocked out Stoke and Liverpool in previous years.

Be kind in the comments

Dan

Tags Sevilla Valencia Villatrreal

18 Comments

  1. Stephanie says:

    He’s an expert at EL unfortunately ☹️

  2. mish says:

    hey……Arsenal just followed Daniel ek on twitter, big progress with take over?

    1. Lindsay malepa says:

      Villarreal lost 2 important players .they will be less confident now .if KT plays we win by 2 goals difference. We need goals from auba and the magic of saka.

  3. Wyoming says:

    If Arsenal or Villareal make the Cl ialthough they both will finish well outside the top four it will be exactly what the Super League wanted something Arsenal fans vehemently protested against.
    If Arsenal fans are true to their beliefs they should be storming the Emirates on Thursday to protest big team privilege.
    But will the fans be true to principle or remain silent hypocrits?

    1. Pepe says:

      Which principle
      A champions league spot is fought in two phases one is European success and league position so if arsenal make it through European success how does that relate to super league
      Are you trolling?

    2. mish says:

      wyoming ….you said it all, football fans are sheep, they just follow opinion

      1. Pepe says:

        You proved to be a sheep by also following his opinion. And you are more of a sheep when the opinion on it’s own is unthoughtful and useless
        Earning a place and given a place means the same thing in your world then i don’t want to live in your world

        1. ozziegunner says:

          👍 Pepe

    3. ThirdManJW says:

      @Wyoming

      You couldn’t be anymore wrong with your comment.

      Qualifying for the CL, via the EL, means you actually have to win something! In fact, winning the EL to qualify is a far better achievement than finishing 4th and winning nothing. Especially when you also consider that some CL teams drop down into the EL as well.

      The ESL was invitation only, winning was irrelevant, and Spurs can testify to that! Haha!

    4. Ackshay says:

      Typical american mentality
      storm the emirates ? like storm the capitol
      then what we behead arteta

      1. ozziegunner says:

        👍

      2. siamois says:

        👍I’m still waiting for them to storm Area 51!😂

    5. Sean Williams says:

      Wyoming.
      You are not an Arsenal supporter….that is so obvious.

  4. gotanidea says:

    Emery knows a lot about his ex-players’ tendencies, so hopefully Aubameyang still has some tricks up his sleeve. Luckily, our wingers are in great condition, except maybe Martinelli

  5. Quantic Dream says:

    I still believe we will drive a stake through Dracula’s heart.

    1. ozziegunner says:

      QD, bit macabre and disrespectful to Unai Emery; however if Arsenal do turn up (big if) their overall quality should get the result.

      1. Quantic Dream says:

        @ozziegunner
        Death to Dracula! 😂 On a serious note though, our defence will determine this game. How humiliating would it be to get whooped and knocked out by Emery. The boys MUST NOT allow this to happen!

  6. Sean Williams says:

    Yep Villareal will be hard to beat, but we may do it, but it’s on a knifes edge. The problem is MEDIOCRITY.

    The recipe for MEDIOCRITY. Kroenke…..mediocre. Arteta mediocre. Vinai and Board…..mediocre. Team play……usually mediocre.

    Recipe. Mix all the ingredients together, add big dose of the spice ‘kidding yourself’ and boil until rancid. Result…….Arsenal.

    Even so our unpredictably mediocre team could win this match. Still rooting for the lads but we have to change owner, manager and board to begin the Alchemical transformation.

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