Opinion – Were the Emery rumours just wishful thinking from Arsenal fans?

Are Arsenal Fans Making Up Our Own Emery Rumours? By Dan Smith

Some gooners have worked themselves into a tizzy over all those Emery rumours. Many will be disappointed over the next two weeks, waiting to hear about a managerial change only to be disappointed. The closer we get to the end of the international break; reality will set in that when we next play, against Southampton, the same man will be in charge.

The assumption was a loss to Leicester would be the end of Unai Emery, especially with defeat putting us 9 point behind the Foxes. The only issue being that the assumption completely came from Arsenal Fans. (With Paul Merson agreeing on Sky.)

Yes, the media were happy to go along with the Emery rumours as it’s easy media, but take the emotion out of things, the notion that anyone’s job was on the line at the King Power came from no-one inside the club. If they leaked anything to the press, it’s that they plan to stick to their original idea of reviewing the situation in the summer.

While at some clubs you could dismiss that, we are unique in having no track record in terms of sacking people. With Arsene Wenger at the helm for two decades, we don’t know if the Kroenke family are the type to pull the trigger or demand patience.

While it’s great in 2019 that many fans have platforms to be heard, it says a lot about some fans arrogance that they went off, decided a time frame for the latest coach, and are now acting like they been lied too, when the only people who came up with the Emery rumours with such a deadline were themselves.

Don’t get me wrong, the Spaniard is having enough poor results to be under pressure, even worse are the performances. When you are walking away well beaten at Leicester and people expected it, you know the standards have dropped. Yet within our fanbase, it’s idealistic and realistic.

I go back to why I never wanted Arsene Wenger to leave, we got ourselves so caught up in the debate we never considered if the owners were ambitious enough to get a top name to replace him. There was a reason that the rookie Arteta was within touching distance of getting the post before Emery.

Why is it when a Man United, Man City or Chelsea job is available they interview the biggest names?
Arsenal should be and could be a vacancy that interests everyone, but only if the job criteria is to be champions. We are worrying if Jose gets the job, but we are worrying about nothing.

We are pointing out that Enrique and Allegri are on a sabbatical, yet who said they are our targets? Why would a shortlist go from Arteta, Viera, etc to some of the biggest names in the world? Why have we assumed any of those names would tolerate a limited budget? They have only ever gone where it’s realistic to win silverware. Anyone with a proven record would want a huge budget and control over the club.

Can you see the Kroenke’s going from interviewing Arteta to suddenly giving 150 million for Jose to spend, breaking up the team they have put together behind the scenes?

Remember how Ed Woodward was hung out to dry when he failed to buy a defender? You think Silent Stan would put himself in that position?

A line our fanbase keep spinning is that the Kroenke family needs to pick between losing a few million now, or 45 million when we don’t qualify for the Champions League.

Who said they have a target in mind who’s free now? Fans assume you would make a change now, giving a proven world class coach time to rescue our bid to finish top 4. That’s what an owner who cares would do.

The only thing the American’s will be thinking regarding Emery’s contract, is ‘why pay compensation now when you can rid yourself of his services for nothing in the summer?’ You then simply give his salary to another man so grateful to have such a prestige job they are willing to be a yes man. That’s how our club operates. We know that by looking at the reality.

Anything else is wishful thinking from our fans….

Dan Smith


  1. We are in dire straits. Most of us blame the manager’s formation, team selection, substitutions, etc. I think there’s a more glaring issue.

    Our main problem is what we do without the ball, regardless of formation or personnel. We are simply less committed than most teams we play against when we don’t have the ball. It’s been like that for years.

    As other teams developed intensity and pressing, we are contented to persist with an old-fashioned system of zonal marking and defending in our half. Our system was common years ago, but as football evolved, we failed to adapt to new developments.

    We tend to sit back, afford the opposition time and space to play out of their half. When it’s our turn to play out, they come at us like a pack of wolves, force us into making mistakes or play it safe with long balls. This difference in how things are done without the ball has hampered our competitiveness, especially in league games.

    Without the ball, we set up like an opposition that we would love to play against. One that would let us have uninterrupted possession in our half and pass the ball till we lose it.

    While we are passive campers without the ball, most teams in the league are proactive competitors. While we wait patiently for the opposition to make mistakes to get the ball back, they hustle us quickly into errors and conceding possession.

    With our lower work rate, it’s only fair that the more diligent team gets the result. The way we play without the ball is almost unbecoming of a Premier League side.

    It’s time we evolve or be left further behind

    1. Very deep and true. And this can only be fixed by a manager who knows what he is doing. And Emery does not know what he is doing. Sacking Emery now makes sense. Teams sack their managers at any point on time. Bayern just did.

      1. We need a manager who can implement a competitive system relevant to the modern game.

        When I watch games and see the opposition pressing, hustling and not letting us play, then see us sitting back when they have the ball, it drives me absolutely bonkers.

        What gives us the right to work less and expect a better result?

  2. I think its all about Finance,this board will not sack Emery because of the compensation they would have to pay and that they do not want to be seen as a panic stricken sacking club.Things will not get better while he is heras coach,his methods and ideas are failing repeatedly,with obvious problems going unadressed, the only thing that may change the boards attitude is if gate receipts fall.
    Also Dan yes i think wishful thinking is probably right on our part but we all have to dream once in a while.

  3. For the last time, Kroenke owns this club, he does not run it! He pays people to do that for him. Please, read that statement again and again and again till you understand what it means. Am not trying to be disrespectful, but it is pointless dragging Kroenke’s name into these debates just as pointless as it is comparing Woodward,an employee, to Kroenke, an owner. I bet you Kroenke can’t even name 10 Arsenal players off his head, present or past.

    Raul and Vinai are the ones keeping Emery in his job. Vinai, guy in charge of finance, feels we already spent £17M to pay off Wenger and his staff 2 years ago, now a further £10-15M on Emery would bring the loss to £30M. That is champions league money gone and the new manager hasn’t even been paid yet, neither is there a guarantee we will get into the champions league with a new coach.

    Raul, the guy in charge of football, probably feels top 4 is gone. So to get back into the champions league we would need a Europa league specialist and surprise surprise, we already have one, Emery.
    So that is 2 out of 2 top guys who can fire Emery have incentive to keep him in.

    Josh might have influence but he probably goes along with what the executives assessment of the situation is. His dad, big Kroenke, then goes along with what his son says. So there, blame Raul and Vinai for Unai! Not Kroenke..

    1. Excellent post QD, I’ve been trying to educate many on here with the same narrative but not as eloquently as you have written. Very well said sir!

      1. @Declan
        Thanks mate! I think Edu, the Technical Director, can also shoulder some blame too since we saw him sitting with Raul V Leicester. So I can only assume he was there evaluating the coach and he has some kind of say in what happens to him.

          1. Well reasoned article Dan. As stated by Tony Adams in his interview on Sky Sports Football, the Arsenal players have lacked character, with no leaders among their lot. There are too many over paid pampered players and not enough hard nosed “professionals”, in the true sense of the word. As Dan says money will be required to upgrade the midfid and central defence, something managers like
            Enrique, Allegri and particularly Mourinho will demand.
            QD has succinctly put what the attitude of the Arsenal management and Board will be.

    2. Well said QD……………………the most staggering thing about it all is why on earth did they pay this manager £6m pa ?…………………pay him the living wage and we could have got him and his crew gone cheaply !

  4. Tbf I didn’t know a great deal about Emery before he was appointed. But if you’d told me back then that 18 months down the line we’d be worse off than before, I wouldn’t have believed you! But this is the position we find ourselves in….
    So, the board are sticking with him.. will he turn things around? Who knows.. Is there a manager out there who can? Who knows…
    All I know is.. things will probably get even worse.. yes, and that includes Liverpool winning the league! And what if they are invincible and go on to win the CL also??? 😩

    1. Nobody can stop Liverpool, unless their key players get injured. Their work rate and speed are so high, as if they take steroids everyday

      Klopp and his staffs have done excellent job in boosting their players’ stamina and pace. Maybe only Tuchel, Rodgers and Nagelsmann could match him in this department

      Regarding Arsenal, the relegation threat is real. I’m sure Arsenal board and executives have already set the limit for Emery

      1. Yeah, it’s quite the opposite at Arsenal @gotanidea. Because I’m sure Emery hired his staff from the tortoise zoo to work on our stamina and speed! 🙂

    2. I know how you feel Sue. Thing is, Individually, I actually like the Liverpool’s players commitment to get the ball and win games! Something we Gooners would love to see. Fact is, I don’t think our squad have the same hunger or desire to work that hard any more. That kind of drive comes from a manager like Klopp or Pep, where nothing but full-on is acceptable! Anything less and you’re out!

      At Arsenal it’s different. As we all know 🙁

      1. They’re like United, of old. You can never write them off, winning games with a minute left on the clock, help from the officials 😜😂
        How I wish we had all of that right now! Can’t remember the last time I really enjoyed watching a game, from start to finish.. which is really sad to admit. All I wonder now, is how many we’ll concede and lose by. Times really are tough, GunneRay ☹

        1. Agree, Sue. When was the last time we had a “fantastic” performance? Something to really write home about? It was dying under Wenger but Emery has totally killed any attacking style off! Come to think of it. We don’t have style! 🙁

      2. Our inept manager was supposed to have implemented a pressing game like Bindippers.
        It`s not rocket science to get players as fit, it`s sports science !
        It`s also not a secret how players train or what the tactics are as players and staff move from clubs and can tell other clubs what Klopp/Pep and co are doing on the training ground……………..if Dick is training players tom do then same then the players have to buy in to it, if they dont then it`s because they dont have respect for the manager and this manager has not got the aura of Klopp/Pep or even Wenger.

        1. Agree Le Coq but wasn’t it getting like that under Wenger!? We just kept making the same mistakes with no plan B! What the hell do they do in training? Do they train?

        2. Sorry LeCoq but no he wasn’t – he is meant to be implementing a press that’s true, but no one ever said it would be like Lpools 🤷‍♂️
          They have built their identity around intensity (and admit as much) – no one else is going to press the same as them and nor should we – we are Arsenal not Lpool.
          The Invincibles clever pressing style is what we should be looking to reintroduce imo.

          To be fair Emery has been working on players work rate ready for the pressing system – all those complaints about him just wanting players to be willing to run? Getting the work rate up to the required level needed imo 🤷‍♂️
          Why hasn’t it gone any further with implementation? I don’t know, maybe it’s Emery or maybe it’s the players themselves – sometimes you see some of them go to press but then they see others not doing so which makes it all pointless 🤷‍♂️

      3. GunneRay, hunger and desire to work hard in games are some things that have been missing from Arsenal for a fair few seasons now. You never knew whether Arsenal was going to turn up or not.

  5. Four Arsenal players were busy watching the Leicester player instead of pressing him just before he passes into our box which eventually led to the first goal. Our players are becoming weak minded just like Emery. We are scared to defend and scared to attack and of all the 20 EPL teams, we are the slowest in the way we play. No pace, no skill, no stamina. And for Emery to keep saying every match that we are playing our game plan, if we are not careful, we are looking at 15th position by December with this type of performances.

  6. We should start our upcoming matches by pressing the opponents immediately they cross our half line, win the ball back and start a direct counter-attack. That midfield with Guendouzi slows down our attack most of the time because of too much holding on to the ball and Kolasinac is the king of back pass. All these are happening because Emery is telling the players to play it safe. You cannot play safe and score goals or win matches. We should play our hardest workers and fighters who are ready to run for 90 minutes with mostly forward passes. With our current way of playing, even if we win some games, we may struggle to score more that 1 goal.






  7. We are so bereft of quality defenders and midfielders ,as a team we have ceased to function regardless of the system deployed.A defensive back three system did not work in Portugal nor at Leicester.Significantly, the top four sides in the PL play a straightforward 4-3-3 system which relies on pacey, athletic players in all departments.Unfortunately we lack pace and athleticism at centre back and in midfield with the exception of AMN and Willock who are not yet the finished articles.Neither Ozil nor Ceballos ,Torreria and Xhaka fall into the athletic category, and for these reasons Emery is unable to turn into a 4-3-3 system which would ironically suit our highly priced front three and the highly talented Martinelli.These problems will remain even if Emery is replaced and for these reasons, and of course the substantial divorce settlement to the departing Manager and his support team,I suspect the Board members will ride out the black until the end of the season.On the matter of an eventual replacement,I echo the sentiments expressed by LOL in an earlier post and the side analysis of QD.Well said guys.

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