Wenger questions Arsenal’s action towards his replacement

Arsene Wenger believes Unai Emery was not given enough time as Arsenal’s manager after the Spanish boss nearly took Villarreal to the final of the Champions League.

The Spaniard was chosen to replace Wenger when the club legend left his managerial role in 2018.

Emery had won the Europa League with Sevilla before becoming Arsenal’s boss and he led the club to the final of the same competition, while narrowly missing out on a top-four finish in his first season.

He was sacked in his second campaign and he has since got his reputation repaired back at Villarreal by winning last season’s Europa League with them.

As his team tried but failed to knock Liverpool out of the UCL last night, Wenger insisted Arsenal were too quick to oust him from the Emirates.

“They didn’t give him enough time, but there is a lot to talk about,” Wenger told beIN Sports as quoted by Express Sport. “For example, is it right that a team who is not successful in the group stages can play in the Europa League. 

“For the last 10 years, the teams who are not successful in the Champions League go on to win the UEFA Cup. So, he has transformed a non-successful team into a successful one with Sevilla.

“It was more to give an importance to the trophy than to the sporting integrity. I think Unai Emery is a great coach, he has shown it in Spain and he is constantly at the top level.”

Just Arsenal Opinion

In hindsight, we probably should have given Emery more time. But in football, the manager is only as good as his last few results. Arsenal was on a downward spiral with him at the helm before he left, and they had no other choice.

His replacement, Mikel Arteta has since won two trophies for the club and he might take us back to the Champions League at the end of this campaign.

Tags Arsene Wenger Unai Emery


  1. Wenger just set himself up for drag with this comment.
    The fan base would come for anyone would criticize now.
    We have been asked not to share our opinion, or criticize what we might feel not right or even ask questions.
    Yesterday it was Henry, it’s Wenger turn today..

  2. “ Arsenal was on a downward spiral with him at the helm before he left, and they had no other choice.”
    So why was Arteta not sacked with an even worse run of results

    1. Exactly silentstan👍

      Incoming excuses –

      But he has the youngest squad in the history of football
      But covid hit (it didn’t affect the other teams in the league just Arsenal )

      But the squad he inherited was awful (the fa cup win had nothing to do with said players )

      But he needs 500 million to get us back to the top (like 250 million in 18 months isn’t enough )

      But he’s the youngest manager in the league (didnt realise the arsenals managers job had turned into an earlier learning centre )

      I’m sure a few more will pop up .

      1. I have nothing personal against Arteta. I do want him to take us far, because of my fondness of the team, not the manager. But it’s obvious, even to a blind man that the standards were significantly lowered to accommodate his excesses. It may be that the club didn’t want to go in the way of Man Utd, who have turned Old Trafford from a theater of dreams to a theater of nightmares. Maybe that’s why he’s been given so much leverage. That said, I do see that the team is about to get back into Europe’s top competition, which is where we belong. I’ve heard fans here say that we do not have a divine right to win matches, and therefore the team should not be criticized for woeful performances. Well, I choose to believe it’s our birthright to play in the CL. Mr Wenger caused it by always qualifying for the competition. So it’s not my fault. Anyway, let’s support the team and pray that the Manager’s usual brain farts when it comes to man management doesn’t rear it’s ugly head this summer. The likes of Pepe, Saliba, Mavropanos, Guendouzi, Torreira and even Aubameyang comes to mind. But sadly, I feel he hasn’t changed in this direction as qualifying for the CL will give him more powers to do and undo within the club as he would have endeared himself to the board, ultimately making him more arrogant. Let’s support the team at this moment. That should be the motto right now

        1. Your user name like calculus equation is reflecting on ur comments cos it’s highly complicated and not straightforward.

      2. Can’t point that out without being labeled a hater or not a real fan. Even if you are consistent in your criticism regarding Wenger and Emery, if you dare apply the same standards to Arteta you are wrong.

        You are correct about the excuses, a bit odd that these excuses are now deemed “acceptable” since Arteta took over. People cried out when we fell to 9th under Emery and demanded he be sacked.

        Finish 8th twice with Arteta and it is called “progress.”

        Hopefully we can finish 4th, and that is true progress compared to the table finishes of Emery and Wenger.

        I would happily admit progress with a 4th place finish, even though it is merely getting back to a place that many said was not enough for Wenger and Arsenal.


        1. @durand
          I’ve judged Arteta the same as I did Wenger and Emery ,but now apparently I have an agenda .
          Funny old world being a football fan with a different opinion to others .

          1. It is quite clear that this a thread of people with an agenda. Whilst it is true that some people have given the manager some leeway due to the relative youth of the team I am yet see anyone suggest that that he should not be criticised if he makes mistakes.
            No-one has suggested that 8th place is progress.
            What I am seeing here is a whole load of straw man arguments being presented to oppose those who support Arteta.

          2. because you lie repeatedly even when corrected on certain points, that is how we ALL know you have an agenda.

        2. I don’t think that Emery deserved longer despite the fact that I have supported Arteta when we were just about rubbing along.

          One had won multiple European trophies and the other was miraculously setting out on his managerial debut at Arsenal and did win the FACup in his first season. Lucky then, to have had Wenger’s players to help him along but Emery- with a very positive set of results- managed to lose 4th, the Europa League final , and ultimately the players who were a disgrace to the badge

          I don’t think he was suited to working in England. I certainly don’t bear him any ill will. To get to the semifinals of the CL with Villa Real is no mean feat. But longer at Arsenal wasn’t going to work

        3. Here come the lies as usual including Emerys 8th as Arteta despite his end of season form on taking over being 5th with and FA cup win. This level of lying in regards to Arteta is what winds me up.

        4. I think you are being hard on those who have defended Arteta, Durand, and it hasn’t always been about thinking that he was the greatest thing since sliced bread.

          If you start with AW falling short twice and another experienced head leading a team to capitulate in the league and a European final then I would say that the club was on a serious down turn by this point. It took a while to recover and we will never know if a Conte or a Tuchel could have applied the magic dust on the same divisive rabble that ran the dressing room. Would they have wanted the challenge?

          That is where we were heading under Emery and the club took a surprising decision to take a different route in appointing Arteta. To look at the table doesn’t take into account where we would have ended up if Emery hadn’t been sacked. I believe it would have been quite a bit worse.

          Arteta has come through his apprenticeship pretty well in my opinion. He was lucky to get the chance, and he was lucky that the board supported him in the way that they have. Little or no credit has been given to Arteta for changing the mind set and for getting the team to where they are now even with his relative inexperience. There are managers with longer CVs who most likely could not have achieved as much during the same time frame. To keep referring to the 8th place finish when so much needed to change before a real change in league position could occur misses what was happening over the transfer windows

          It has been costly but IF Arteta is actually building a new Arsenal then the pain of the wait will have been worth it. Better to have solid foundations in my humble opinion

          1. Emery wanted Partey, didnt get him; Arteta wanted Partey, Board delivered. Emery dropped Ozil result outcry and Ozil reinstated; Arteta wamted Ozil out, Board backed him. Transfer budget given by Board to Emery compared to Arteta. Enough said.

            1. A keen follower of Emery Ozziegunner and Emery did reinstate Ozil which was his mistake as far as I’m concerned. You say enough said, but I can’t support Emery being weaker than the players who in some part caused his downfall. You are absolving Emery for it all and I can’t

              1. Wasn’t the board behind oil reinstatement?

                Like OG said the board has given Arteta everything they denied Emery and some more. It’s either they learned their lesson or they had their own agenda against Emery.

                One thing I am sure about is had Emery got same support Arteta has been given, we would have been fighting both for EPL and UCL titles now.

                1. @HH
                  Or may be the board realised that Emery was not a leader (manager) that they hoped he would be?
                  Artetas ruthelssness, no nonsense attitude won the board over. He has that arrogant, my way or the highway attitude. If Arteta had capitulated and let the known trouble makers in the dressing room over power him may be the board would have lost confidence him.
                  But I do think that the board realised that it was not just the managers being poor, Wenger, Emery, Ljumberg and Arteta all faced the same nonsensical dressing room scroungers / troubler makers..

                  1. Would Arteta ruthlessness have been effective without board support to get rid of trouble makers? The support that Emery was denied.

                    Emery dropped Ozil and the board wanted him reinstated. Arteta dropped Ozil and the board supported him even paying him to leave.

                    Arteta ruthlessness has absolutely zero effect if the board was not behind him. They weren’t behind Emery a far more talented and experienced manager. A nice person to boot.

                    1. Plus Emery was only a “coach” and left out of final player decisions and transfers, too many people tend to forget he was working with one hand tied behind his back.

                      Players were aware of this, hence their willingness to cause the trouble they did. Arteta had the boards full support as well as the owner, and was changed from “coach” to “manager” and the power and control over rosters and final decisions that came with it.

                    2. @HH
                      Clearly the board was onboard with Emery phasing out trouble mixer Ozil. That’s why they let him drop Ozil in the first place. Ozil was an underperformer for the majority of the time he was at Arsenal, but wenger kept shoehorning him into the team no matter what.
                      Emery comes in, has a proper look at him and decided he was not up to the task he was trying to steer the team towards, so dropped him. That’s when I realised how Ozil was idolised by a large section of our fanbase. They went into complete meltdown, crying about how ozil is being marginalised for being turkish, being a muslim, how we were all bigots and racist for backing Emery on the matter. The usual ozilists made it their mission to mock, disrespect and humiliate Emery for daring to drop their idol (Ozil). Emery showed weakness and gave into the fans and Ozil’s social media PR stunts. The other deadwood saw an opportunity to hide behind the whole saga and downed tools..
                      Arteta dared to do the same by dropping your cult hero (ozil), the same backlack from the same ozilists, constant ozil PR propganda on his social media etc but Arteta was not buying the nonsense. He stood his ground. Arteta was very lucky that there were no fans in the stadium due to the Covid pandemic. He would have gotten the same treatment from the same people that hounded Emery the moment he dropped dear idol.

                      I think the club realised that “The Shirt Selling Genius” was the problem, they would have sides with any manager that came after Emery.

                      Emery showed weakness and did not gain respect from the majority of the players. With Arteta they seem to have bought into his propaganda and distanced themselves from those trying to cause division in the dressing room.

              2. It was Emery’s weakness to stand his ground that contributed to me losing my confidence in him. He let the primadonnas in the dressing room and our very toxic fans over power him.
                In the end I was so frustrated with him that I just wanted the whole circus to end (Him being fired). It has become unbearable watching him mentally flusteredX

                1. Goonster, as Durand correctly noted Emery was appointed “coach”, with limited powers compared to “manager”, particularly given the management structure implemented prior to the departure of Arsene Wenger. Unai Emery dropped Ozil, but was pressured by the Board and Ozil’s fan base to reinstate him, with negative impact on team results and Emery’s position. The Board amended the situation with Mikel Arteta when he was appointed as coach, then promoted to manager..

          2. I don’t think it’s being harsh SueP I’m just pointing out the glaring inconsistencies.

            Goalposts constantly being moved, project, process, all seemingly to avoid a standard the club used to fire 2 better managers.

            Why wasn’t Wenger backed financially his last 18 months with 250 million? Would things have been different?

            Why wasn’t Emery granted total control over players like Arteta was? Would things have been different?

            I just try to be consistent with standards and expectations regarding players and managers.

            I feel a manager should rise to expectations of the club (4th place) rather than club lowering their standards for a manager.

            Just pointing out what many considered to be “unacceptable” under Wenger and Emery is somehow acceptable with Arteta.

            That’s all, the waffling that has occurred.

            1. @Durand
              That’s a myth. Wenger was financial backed. Same as Emery. In wengers last 2 seasons we spent about £230 million. During Emery’s 18 months we spent about £230 million. Under Arteta we have also spent around the £230 million mark.

              1. You didn’t in what time under Arteta we have spent such amount.

                Can you please give a breakdown of that spending for every manager?

                1. @HH
                  Ozil = £42 million
                  Sanchez = £35 million
                  Laca = £50 million
                  Xhaka = £30 million
                  Mustafi = £35 million
                  Auba = £60 million

                  That’s just the big money transfers. Lets not add the likes of
                  Santi = £16 million
                  Perez = £17 million etc.

                  Smaller ones likes

                  Elneny = £8 million
                  Cech = £12 million

                  So wenger was backed but the majority of those signings were underwhelming..
                  And it’s wenger himself that always refused to spend big, he always complained about the likes of City, Man United, Chelsea, Barcelona, Madrid etc spending those amounts.. Wenger was just stuck in his own bubble while the football world kept going past him. He became too delusional, stagnant and stuck in the past. Thinking his 90’s model was timeless where he could pick unknown players from France and expect to fight and win League titles..
                  This is what really infuriated and frustrated me so much with him. I love, adore and respect the man but my goodness, he was so frustrating during the Emirates era.

                2. Emery,
                  Pepe = £72 million
                  Saliba = £28 million (I know he did not play for him but the club was willing to spend that much on nobody 19 year old).
                  Sokratis = £18 million
                  Leno = £22 million
                  Torreira = £27 million
                  Luiz = £8 million
                  Guendouzi = 8 million
                  Teirney = £25 million
                  Martinelli = £7 million

                  So the club was willing to spend a bit for each manager..

              2. Sorry but I find that hard to believe, the numbers you throw around. Can you perhaps point me to where you found those figures?

                You saying the club spent nearly 700 million Euros on player transfers in the last 5 seasons?

                I thought Sven spent around 70 million for Unai, and I could be wrong but I don’t recall Wenger spending over 100 million each of his last 2 years in charge.

          3. The most logical comment by a true gooner. Thanks for schooling those comparisons are just two colors. Probably they are blind to see how many managerial changes manU, tot and other teams have had. And how far are they on the league table? Chelsea had to spend almost half a billion to come close to Man city and liverpool. We are now witnessing a beautiful football arsenal used to play and with an added character which previous teams lacked. I am not talking about the invincibles please, don’t remind me! So there’s definite progress, some Arteta haters will say we are regressing or stagnant. The squad is young and talented. The manager is young and confident.

      3. We do have the youngest 1st 11 in the league and it’s not even close we’re miles ahead of the 2nd team in that regard nevermind the rest of the league.

        Covid absolutely hit us worse short term than anyone else in the league because of all the ageing players we had on the books. Completely destroyed our window, we lost over 100 mil in transfers at least minimum and got stuck with wages. At this point your just being wilfully ignorant none of this is new information to you.

        The FA cup came under him and the squad lost the Europa 4-1 to the same team the year before.

        Final one is literally just true

        Strange games you play site

      4. So what the point. Go cry. Your arteta agenda is finish. Cry baby but oldies is you

    2. Arteta gave Arsenal trophy early, he gain the trust from the player and the board. His later worse of run is a consequence of rebuilding, a decision that’s taken with consent from the board. In case of Unai, when the team had a run of bad results he loss the trust from the players. The board had no other choice than to sack him an appoint someone else.

    3. Downward spiral after achieving fifth and a Europa League final and sacked having Arsenal in eighth place, where they ultimately finished. He was sacked because his name was Unai Emery not Mikel Arteta (an ex Arsenal player) and the Board didnt support Emery with the players he wanted nor internal discipline of disruptive players at the Club, already identified under Arsene Wenger.

    4. @Silentstan

      Your question is answered with context. Wenger’s problems were of his own making, and we were only getting worse, whereas Arteta inherited massive problems, he did not create them, and we’re only improving.

      Any manager needs time to work through those problems. FYI, took Kloop 3 years to create HIS team, and almost 4 years to finally win a trophy with Liverpool. And he was vastly experienced world class manager.

      So even the best of them need time.

      1. Exactly. “Even the best of them need time “. Some fans were whining why the board didn’t go for Conte. Let’s watch the boxing match between Conte and Arteta. Probably some might eat their humble pie.

    5. @silentstan
      I see a difference.
      When we dropped out of Top 4 under Wenger, Wenger and with him the owners, believed it was just a blimp, and we would be back quickly. When Wenger failed, Emery was brought in to bring us back quickly. Not before he failed, did we truly realise clubs like Liverpool and Spurs had overtaken us through careful planning and clever management with smaller budgets than us.
      Then we realised, we would need a more solid and longer term plan to make us competitive.
      IM O that is why, there is more patience with Arteta. Unfair maybe, but…

  3. Emery plainly is a god manager . But that doe snot mean he was right for us and I do not forget that he had massive communucation difficulties. My opinion is that a manager who is determined ENOUGH to learn English, at least to an understandable level, would have been streets ahead of Emery inEnglish, well before he left us.

    THAT was his REAL PROBLEM.


    Sad, but that’s the reality if you cannot properly communicate in spoken English.

    We had no choice in the end but to sack him. But he remains a top coach, just not suited for English teams.

    1. I’m not sure Bielsa even spoke English but had his Leeds team playing some good stuff and nowadays you have a squad of different foreign players and I’m sure not all of them speak English but i do agree with you on Emery he wasn’t the right fit for us.

      1. even if thats true, he was still able to communicate with players tho. They players knew what Bielsa wanted. Our players never knew what Emery was asking of them and it seems his staff did not pass the message along effectively either.

    2. @jon fox
      Agree 100%
      Good communication skills is a very important tool in any management situation, and Emery was clearly struggling because of his lacking English. Sadly, I might add, because he is clearly a top manager in Spain.

    3. I supported Emery until that game against Watford. We actually drew that game but it really felt like a draining loss.

      I saw Emery trying to communicate and failed as the players just could not understand.

      Like Jon Fox I just think Emery was a great coach but not suited for us.

      Arteta has made a lot of errors but I am willing to give him time even if we do not make the Top 4 this season as I have seen progress in terms of building a young team which is spirited and showing a togetherness that we have not seen for a long time.

  4. Wenger has his rights to lament and express his opinions on Arsenal as much as he feels and deems it fit to lament and express them.

    However, but since Emery has since moved on and winning after his sacking by Arsenal. And Arsenal have since moved on too and have won two titles after they sack Emery. And this season they are looking could achieve a higher level of a something for the first time in 5 or 6 seasons if they get a top3 or top4 place finish in the EPL this season. Which will enabled them play in the UCL next season. But if things work fine to their favour in this direction to go their way.

    It could therefore be said that, all for do, Arsenal are okay after they’ve sacked Emery. And Emery is okay too after he was sacked by Arsenal.

      1. Are they not trophies? How many trophies have man u, Tottenham won within the said period?

    1. What are the two titles? Do you mean the FA cup? A cup my friend. And the other? Charity Shield? That is not a legitimate trophy just a micky mouse game to open the season!

  5. We kept patience with Wenger when it was clear he was long past it and lost out on Klopp and Pep – how different things could have been had the club shown some ambition rather than sentiment.

    1. Exactly. It took too long too realise, others were improving quickly, and we were standing still.

    1. Benzema for the ballon d’or
      Liverpool likely winners of the premier league and it’s anybody’s guess for the CL final

  6. The common denominator in the latter years of Mr Wenger, Emery and early Mikel’s days was Mesut Ozil (and I have nothing against the lad). All 3 tasted humiliation as long as he was our player. Mikel wisely showed him the door and is it a coincidence we are fighting for the top 3? In football you win some, you lose some, but not turning up is never acceptable. Blame the weather, the winter break, the physicality – all these are constants, the variable was that he was just not good enough. Unai is and will remain a good coach, a decorated coach, achieved something in Europe Mr. Wenger can only daydream of ( don’t blame him, that was his level and some believed his ways and misinterpreted them as greatness ), if only Unai had been tough with Ozil and showed him whose is the boss, we could have been European Champs (EL for sure). And we as fans are equally guilty for adoring some wannabe has been over a decorated coach.
    Finally we have Mikel who was wise enough to spot the difference and dispose off non performing assets.

      1. I disagree. The manager picks the team. Or are you now suggesting that the board picks the team.

        1. David, who does the coach answer to, particularly when he doesnt have the added status of “manager”?
          It would be naive to think that the Board could not and would not direct a coach in selections. If Emery was in a stronger position he could have strongly “suggested” that the Board leave selections to him. As it was he was expected to coach the players scouted and boight by others.

          1. I disagree with your supposition.
            A coach may be answerable to the board but that does not equate to the board selecting the team.
            Unless you can present evidence of the board directing selections it has to be assumed that Emery selected the team.

  7. I don’t want to ever hear the same people complaining about Emery not being given enough time and backing as Arsenal manager.
    These were the same people absolutely making life so unbearable for the guy. Constantly mocking him, calling him names and calling for the club to get rid of him.

    The majority absolutely turned toxic toward Emery when he tried to get phase out the likes of Ozil.
    They tried the same with Arteta because he also tried and phased out Ozil.
    Most ot them have never forgiven Arteta since then. They still hold that personal grudge going back to that time.

    I was one of the people that tried to give Emery enough time but it became so toxic to even dare try to stand up for him. People got so offended by anyone trying to even say anything positive about Emery. Any positivity comment him was always met with brutal push back. Same as it is with Arteta. Any sort of benign positivity turns peoples into emotional wrecks..
    It became so ridiculous and unbearable that I hoped he would be sacked to end the nonsense.

    1. Goonster, the mockery of Unai Emery by some on here was a disgrace, particularly his English language deficiencies, with pronunciation.

  8. Emery needed to go because the players did not respect him. Difference with Arteta is that the players always backed him and kept trying to find a way out of the situation. The major difference is that Mikel NEVER lost the dressing room. Once you lose the dressing room it’s over. Unai did some good things here too tho. Making a european final is NOT easy. And phasing out the rat Ozil was the right move, and he gave chances to youngsters like Saka.

    1. RSH, I agree with your positives; however it is difficult to get the respect of the players, when the Board brings you in at a lower status to your predecessor.

  9. Its very good that Emery has achieved his successes and led Villareal to a remarkable achievement. But that does not mean that at Arsenal he was doing any good, atleast at the time of his sacking. Also as with PSG, it seems Mr. Emery was not comfortable with a room full of egos. While I agree with the arguement that Mr. Arteta might also not be that good with egos, but generally what is been observed or inferred is that Mr. Arteta put his foot down and took leadership away from the ego players while Mr. Emery ceded control to them. That is particularly a dangerous situation as no one would support him or heed him. And in that situation if he had stayed for the season I believe we would have finished lower than the 8th place finish we achieved. However much I flip flop on the fence regards to Mr. Arteta ,I think with Mr. Emery Arsenal made the right call, however unfair that maybe. And in this situation I agree with AndersS’s assessment.

    1. Sid, please acquaint yourself with Unai Emery’s record at PSG. He has won more of the available domestic trophies and has a higher win percentage than any other recent manager of PSG. No one has taken PSG further in Europe, with his loss in the second leg of the Champions League semi final against Barcelona having some of the dodgiest refereeing yet seen.

      1. Well, Tuchel took them to the final. And sorry Ozzie it was not the semi-final but the round of 16 against Barcelona in 2017. I don’t question his record at PSG, just stating how the players went against him there is similar to how they went against him here. But PSG is a poisoned chalice for any coach, not sure even Pep can make them win, lol. Honestly, all things considered, it is better he is not here than the alternative. He is happy in his niche of Spanish/ underdog teams and we are slowly inching towards the CL. If we want a new coach now I would prefer Mancini.

  10. Three things ruined it all for Emery IMO.
    1. Playing Ozil in the UEL final
    2. Playing Cech instead of Leno in the UEL final
    3. Mykitharian not playing is said UEL final.

    All of the above put together had several effects

    1. We lost the UEL to Chelsea. ( i believe of we had lost to another team things might have been different )
    2. Demoralised team couldn’t fight enough to get fourth place.
    3 . Fans loosing their minds that we lost to Chelsea , a match the stars in the heavens predicted we would win.
    4. Cech returning to Chelsea as a coach

    The fans needed blood, heads needed to roll , there had to be a scape goat.
    Many turned on ozil , I did , he didn’t show up when we played Athletico Madrid is UEL semis under Wenger. A match we had a man advantage for over 75 mins, He didn’t show up in UEL final under Emery . He was our star and didn’t show up. Compare with Griezman and Hazard who were the stars of their respective teams and show up .

    Heads needed to roll, Emery wasn’t ruthless enough , Arteta was and is. That’s why he is where he is today.

    I have so much respect for Emery I wished he would have stayed and given at least end of that season .

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