Following the dismissal of Unai Emery earlier today, Freddie Ljungberg will take charge of Arsenal for Sunday’s trip to Norwich and until the search for a new head coach is complete.

In a statement, Arsenal said, “We have asked Freddie Ljungberg to take responsibility for the first team as interim head coach. We have full confidence in Freddie to take us forward.

“The search for a new head coach is underway and we will make a further announcement when that process is complete.”

The Swede was a fan favourite in his playing days, winning two doubles, scoring an FA Cup final goal against Chelsea which left a young John Terry flat on his stupid face, and was, of course, a key member of the Invincibles who went through a league season without losing a game in 2003-04.

As a player he had spells at West Ham, Seattle Sounders, Chicago Fire, Celtic, Shimizu S-Pulse and Mumbai City following his departure from Arsenal, and soon moved into the coaching world.

He was part of the youth set-up at Arsenal under former Academy boss Andries Jonker, and left with the Dutchman to be one of his assistants at an ill-fated spell at Wolfsburg.

When that ended, he was brought back into the fold by new Academy Manager Per Mertesacker, who said, “He understands the club’s values and how important it is to give young players the opportunity to grow and develop.

“When Freddie left for Wolfsburg it was with the club’s blessing and with a return to Arsenal some day in mind. Everyone knows Freddie loves the club and we look forward to him developing his career with us.”

He took charge of the U23s in the 2018-19 season, and won plaudits for the performances and the way he developed young players like Joe Willock, Bukayo Saka, Emile Smith Rowe and others.

His relationships with those players saw him promoted to the first team coaching staff in the summer of 2019, as they have been a significant part of the first team squad throughout this campaign.

He now faces the task of turning around a team whose form has been dismal for most of this season, no small job for a comparatively inexperienced coach.

We wish him the best of luck, let’s hope we’re ready for Freddie.

Speculation over a permanent appointment is likely to dominate the Arsenal headlines over the coming days/weeks, with the likes of Mikel Arteta, Nuno Espirito Santo, Mauricio Pochettino, Patrick Vieira, and others in the frame.

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Martin Harris

Freddie to steady the ship and then Nuno to take us forward. 🙂

GoonerJust

Poketino seems a good choice

Martin

Yes we need a manager who in 12 years of management has never won a single major trophy. Wenger was castigated but at the end still won 3 Fa Cups. Poch is far from what we need

Kampala goober ?

If we can find him

Tim

Take s good look at the Nuno (and Mendes) situation before deciding if it would be a good thing.

mc1892

Does anyone know whether the stories that he doesn’t hold a full UEFA pro license so can only take charge for 12 weeks are true?

RedCurrant

It’s been reported he’s clear to manage without any restrictions. Don’t know where that story originally came from, but it doesn’t appear to be correct.

Martin

Apart from improving Wolves what has Nuno achieved. He’s a great guy but not good enough for Arsenal

Der32

Freddie to win us the Europa League and bring us back into the Champions League.

Trigg27

My first choice going forward would be Ancelotti. Outside the usual names, I think Lee Bowyer could be a good option, thinking about how GG joined us from Millwall with that one

Hlebs dancing feet

Has there ever been a bald manager/head coach that wasn’t amazing? Zidane, pep, ten Hag. All the best to Ljungberg but I really hope we get some proper football from henceforth.

Public Elneny

Steve Kean

Boom Saka Laca

Sol Campbell

Big Bill

Christian Gross

Tu Harami

I thought Sol was successful at some small club.

Martin

He did very well at Macclesfield

David Hillier's luggage

Sol did a great job at Macclesfield

Badaab

Ian Holloway

PeteyB

I kinda have a soft spot for Holloway. Good entertainment value.

PeteyB

Sean Dyche? Harsh? Not really bald?

Gianluca Vialli didn’t fare very well.

Martin

Tony Pulis

Oberon

Alan Shearer, Christian Gross, Ossie Ardiles, Ian Dowie etc

Chicagooner

Ahem… Henry??
He is still new to it though…

Dave M

It’s true mike Dean has done a great job managing sp*rs from the middle of the pitch over the years

Lobsta

Me

Der32

I’d take a little di Matteo

charvakan

The rest of the league will be sorry to see Emery go. He turned us into an opportunity for bottom-dwelling clubs to gain points and confidence, and an easy source of three points for the league’s elite. But supporters will want to forget him as soon as possible. There will probably be a new manager bounce for Freddie, but I believe most of us realize he’s not going to be the guy who can get the most out of this talented squad. I didn’t know NES was even gettable, but I really like him. I’d be happy with Poch too.… Read more »

loosecannon

I think Arsene pretty much did say “I told you so” the other day

ScotchEggsRule

Would that be Wenger the manager who chose Xhaka over Kante as one of his last transfer acts….

Bould's Eyeliner

Gendouzi. Go away.

Qwaliteee

Phew.

SB Still

Good luck to Freddie.

Hope we can now see the post manager sacking upturn in performance and results.

We have to make up a lot of ground for top 4, more importantly to get our season back on track to the extent possible.

Emery was/is a decent guy buy board were too slow to decide.

Alex

People saying they are glad Mesut outlasted Unai make me wonder where we are at as fans… While Emery wasn’t the most wonderful coach, his dismissal won’t make us much better as this squad is still disjointed for the most part. Chelsea parted with Luiz, and we took him. He’s presently poor at defending regardless of club, coach or system. We’ve got Sokratis whose head had been hot even before he crossed path with Arsenal and Mustafi whose costly mistakes isn’t down to coaching decisions, or Xhaka who is just too too slow, and rash and irrational. These qualities have… Read more »

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

You’re damn right about the players. I want Allegri if he can replace the entire defence by italian players but no italian-style striker, please.

Goonshow

And your glass is half empty and it’s defs going to rain tomorrow.
Just watch a manager (even a caretaker) who (a) has the respect and admiration of the players and (b) can communicate… Freddie will surprise us all!

VZ1

100% true

SharpasFc

Thank you for writing this as it saves me from writing something similar, especially as today I’ve developed a head cold and my brain is all fuzzy.

COYG

momozemio

Kanté (At leqst) is a world class player i’d welcome to Arsenal….

momozemio

*least

ScotchEggsRule

People wanted Emery sacked because he was fucking useless.

BlowHound

Good luck Freddie. It won’t be easy, but my wife is certainly looking forward to seeing your chiselled jaw all over the sports pages for the next few months.

Duno

Chiselled jaw, teen titans go esque. Fun times.
I hope the players give their all this time. #COYG!

cygan’sbaldspot

“My wife”

House of Goons

As “my buddy Dave” says, “definitely the sexiest option”

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

With a bald head, old fans know Freddie attempted to be a male model.

Viva La Prof

I thought he was successful in the handsome boy modelling stakes. Only in his pants though

T.A.

It’s very important for us supporters to keep our expectations at a realistic level. This team is a complete and utter shambles in terms of organization and confidence. I doubt Freddie can create instant balance especially with the senior players. But I can only see his appointment as a positive first step.

charvakan

Screw balance. I’d be happier if we got back to outshooting the opposition. The attacking corps should be terrifying defenses. We’ve got flyers at fullback. Sure we have defensive problems, but our mids aren’t bad. How many EPL teams wouldn’t take Guendouzi or Torreira, or Willock for that matter? The ball can get to Laca and Auba and Pepe often enough to get us three points more often than not.

Badaab

The tone of the club’s statement today makes me think they don’t have a plan in place for this situation, and I’m left feeling apprehensive about what’s to come from raul. Will it be another person represented by one of his agent friends? Will it be a good fit? Have they even started looking?

Tu Harami

Arsenal needs someone like Viera to whip those lazy Bums, I am happy with Ljungberg though.

Mekus

NES can probably do that. But it might take a full summer break to implement.

Nairo254gunna

I do not get the Viera enthusiasm. He has not exactly set the world on fire as a coach and he has been at it for a while now..

Der Kaiser

Be your own man Freddie! Select the formation and players you think best and stick with them. Also give Youth a chance. The real challenge is to just get a centre back partnership that works.

VZ1

does he only have three months? he does not seem to have the full pro license, no?

SharpasFc

Apparently the licence stuff was a red herring.

VZ1

but we don’t know for sure?

ScotchEggsRule

No, it’s been confirmed as media bullshit. He can manage a PL club with his current badges.

I think Ornstein confirmed that?!

VZ1

Yes, it was in the athletic article yesterday

Cultured determination

Invincible for the rest of the season pls, freddie. No pressure!

utkarsh

The executives really need to get this next appointment right. We are on a similar path that of Man U post Ferguson, with David Moyes, making the next appointment especially essential. Fingers crossed! Feel like Poch is a dream that will never happen. Hopeful for Arteta or Nuno i guess

GloryHunter

We’re deffo beating Norwich on sunday! Yes i said it 🙂

mackiwi

“how does it feel to be the Arsenal manager, Freddie?”
“It’s fucking excellent!”

A P

For 3 months max.

ScotchEggsRule

Why 3 months?

Runzac

It will take some time to unfold this utter mess. Remember when the Norwegian Gollum took over utd they had some good results but then again wnt into a rut.

SharpasFc

Utd’s run under Ole ended after we beat them at the Emirates. Also Ed Woodward made the mistake of giving him the job and once he had the job Ole completely changed the way they were playing…either that or Sir Alex stopped helping him.

Fart OverJars

Maybe he can play in midfield as well since we have sweet FA in the department

Alan Sunderland's Mighty Perm of Justice

If there really are toxic characters in that dressing room then Freddie has my full backing if he wants to clear them out (if he’s allowed to…or if he wants to advise the new guy). If there are, then I’m sure Freddie knows exactly who they are. Sure we needed a new boss. But if we lose Wenger, Emery and the next guy in quick succession, then surely you’ve got to look at the characters within the dressing room? I wasn’t happy at all with Xhaka laughing and joking at the end if the game either. He can do one… Read more »

Chidi

First Chelsea legend Frank Lampard, now Arsenal legend Freddie Ljungberg. The FLs are taking over.. ?

towelie

I am confused. Does Freddie have the UEFA Pro Licence or not? Everybody says he only has UEFA A Licence, but a tweet from David Ornstein 2 hours ago says he has the Pro Licence and hence could manage Arsenal if he is successful long term.

Anthony

Ornstein knows.

JamesGodwinson

Interesting. So does Ljungberg have a Pro License or not?

GoonerHoff

I dont see Rodgers name being mentioned too often on these threads? Surely he is exactly what we need… Plays good a brand of football, works well with youngsters.

Anthony

Why on earth would Brendan leave his project with Leicester? He’s got them playing well and in a very good position in the league without much fanfare.

Can’t see it happening personally

Shance

Take note of his first team selection, it will be quite revealing. Emery was selecting teams on desperation, Freddie can be straight forward about it.

It will give you an insight into what he really thinks of the squad. I’m very curious as to who he will put out on Sunday.

Runzac

Gunnersaurus as a holding midfielder

The Spoon

I’m torn, allegri is a hell of a manager, but quite defensive. The romantic in me kind of wants Vieria. Imagine him coaching Willock and Co x

Micky Tayrian

Freddie only won 1 double. But he’s still a fucking legend

OdalGooner

It’s fucken excellent!!!
Long may he reign!

Richie

Right, said Fred.

VZ1

“i’m too sexy for this team”

Santori

This is the sensible approach I mentioned we should take for now. There is no guarantees Freddie can right the ship but he knows the inner workings and the players best at the moment granted little experience at this level. And what it appears we do need is : 1) To build up both the players concentration and confidence levels. Instill a bit more discipline but also get them working as a team again. 2) Get back to basics with defending. No high risk clearances into a couple of yards just outside our box. No risky passing or possession in… Read more »

ScotchEggsRule

“No longer an attractive club”?

You don’t half talk some bollox.

btbt

Guys, should our own Joe Montemurro be considered?

Dave

I’d say no. Let him keep coaching the ladies, they’re doing great and there’s no need to mess that up by taking Joe.

RoyalT

That goodness the hierarchy grew a pair. Best wishes

JamesGodwinson

According to Fabrizio Romano, Allegri is NOT coming to Arsenal.

This is bad news. Romano’s reputation is even bigger than Ornstein in my opinion.

Trump

Quietly hoping ESR gets some prem league minutes