Would Unai Emery really be a good appointment for Arsenal?

Paris Saint-Germain manager Unai Emery is reportedly in London for talks with Arsenal to replace Arsene Wenger this summer. The 46-year-old is expected to leave PSG in the coming weeks as he’s being replaced by former Borussia Dortmund boss Thomas Tuchel.

Emery is certainly vastly experienced as a coach, having managed Lorca Deportivo, Almeria, Valencia, Spartak Moscow, Sevilla and Paris Saint-Germain.

He’s also been very successful in management, having won three Europa League trophies with Sevilla (2013/14, 2014/15 and 2015/16), one Ligue 1 title (2017/18), two Coup de Frances (2016/17 and 2017/18), two Coup de la Ligues (2016/17 and 2017/18) and two Trophees des Champions (2016 and 2017) with PSG.

However, Emery’s inconsistent league campaigns and toils in the Champions League with both Sevilla and PSG have raised questions whether he’d be a good appointment for Arsenal.

Sevilla never broken into the top-four or ran deep in the Champions League

Emery was appointed Sevilla manager in January 2013 and spent three-and-a-half years at the Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán Stadium before leaving for PSG.

He went down as a major success in Spain after leading the club to three consecutive Europa League titles, while making a Copa Del Rey final, but Sevilla’s performances in the league might give Arsenal’s hiring committee pause for thought.

Sevilla’s final positions in La Liga under Emery

  • 2012/13 (9th) 50 points
  • 2013/14 (5th) 63 points
  • 2014/15 (5th) 76 points
  • 2015/16 (7th) 52 points

Under Emery, Sevilla averaged just 60 points over the course of four seasons, with a mean final position of 6th/7th. His side didn’t play a minute of Champions League football in his tenure and such top-level inexperience has haunted his European campaigns as PSG boss.

Failed to lead PSG to European glory and was convincing in Ligue 1

Emery lost out on the Ligue 1 title in his first season at PSG. His side finished eight points behind AS Monaco.

In the Champions League, the French outfit had thrashed Barcelona 4-0 in the first leg of their last-16 clash but suffered an embarrassing and historic 6-1 defeat in the second leg to be knocked out against all odds. Monaco made it to the semi-finals that season, having spent considerably less money than the Parisians.

The following campaign saw PSG win back the title, but that was the minimum requirement of Emery’s job. His position would always depend on the club’s fortunes in Europe.

PSG were knocked out of the Champions League at the last-16 stage again, this time against Real Madrid, further proving they’re in the shadows of the European giants despite outspending them over the summer. Signing Neymar and Kylian Mbappe did little to turn their fortunes so Emery had to go.

Is that really the type of manager Arsenal want to appoint? Somebody who has underachieved in the league and Europe despite vast sums of money being given to him?

Arsene Wenger was heavily criticised after his side fell out of the top-four in his last two seasons and failed to make it past the last-16 of the Champions League in seven years. Emery could be another who repeats history based on his record. His appointment could be a gamble.

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Crippy can be found on Twitter (@CrippyCooke). He is a sports journalist who has written for the Independent, Bleacher Report, Huffington Post, Daily Mail and Daily Telegraph among others. Crippy treats football gossip with a dash of cynicism and loves tearing apart outlandish rumours.

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