Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Emery blames captain exodus and player attitude for Arsenal strife

Unai Emery –  a.k.a the Spanish Bruce Rioch, a.k.a the Spanish Partridge, a.k.a Basque Brendan – is suddenly very talkative.

After 18 months at Arsenal where he said the same thing on repeat in every press conference, the man now can’t stop ‘opening up’ on what happened during his ill-fated spell in charge at the Emirates.

There was a problem with this, an issue with that. This didn’t go quite right. Nor did that. While we understand he’s probably trying to keep his name in the press so that he’s front of mind for future job opportunities, it’s all a bit tiresome.

Anyway, it’s the Winterlull, we’ve little else to do and you’re probably hungry for something more than pictures of Kieran Tierney’s mega thighs doing shuttle runs.

“Arsenal was a club on the downward slope for two years when I arrived,” Emery told France Football (translated by Sport Witness).

“We stopped this fall and even started to straighten the club with a Europa League final and a fifth place in the championship, only one place behind Tottenham while we only took a point in the last five games.

“We had the qualification for the Champions League in hand and it went wrong in the final. But it was a good season and we had the idea to continue this progression. But we lost our four captains: (Laurent) Koscielny, (Petr) Cech, (Aaron) Ramsey and (Nacho) Monreal.

“We have missed personalities this season to stay on track. And some stars did not have the right attitude and asked for more than they gave. Given all that, it would have taken more time to successfully transition to the new Arsenal that I wanted.”

Given the stats highlight a downward spiral in our goals scored, chances created and passes completed during his 18 months and an increase in chances and goals conceded, it feels pretty logical that ‘more time’ wouldn’t have seen things get better. In fact, they’d most likely have gotten worse.

A little dig at the attitude of some players is fair enough; they did pretty much give up on him…well, those that stuck around for long enough. Honestly, if you’re a coach and that becomes pervasive on your watch you’ve only yourself to blame.

And don’t get us started on justifying that first season as passable because we were ‘only one place behind Tottenham’. Jeez.

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“It would have taken more time to transition to the Arsenal I wanted”
Thanks god I didnt have to watch “the Arsenal he wanted” Must be one that concedes 40 shots per game.


I would argue that he took over a pretty well coached team, did well at the start and the longer things went on the more his influence dragged the side down.

We can see Arteta trying to turn things round without the 4 big players mentioned above and a lack of understanding among the remaining squad on what to do.

Let’s hope Mikel can do it. At least the players and most fans are on his side.

SB Still

Absolutely, anything that the team achieved in the 1st season was despite Emery than due to Emery.

We could all see Emery influence dragging down players – all the stats (offensive and defensive) points to that.

Even the youngsters, who burst on to the scene this season like Saka, Willock even Martinelli struggled to follow Emery and started to fade as the season wore on – Emery effect!


I always got the feeling he did not really want to play the youngsters. Always threw them at the deep end of a match or overplayed them constantly

Nacho de Montreal is tasty

This is utterly false.


Yea, he played Guendouzi all the time, regardless of form.


One place behind Tott***** is six too many


I’m not really here to pile on Emery. But, isn’t player attitude largely under his control and influence?


Revised Headline: Emery Blames Issues of His Making (Not Himself)


At least they think that’s what he meant, but nobody’s really sure.


Like God, then?

Nacho de Montreal is tasty

I like to be fair to Emery but one point in five games is failure not success because we came close to top four despite that.

Reality check

He has now failed twice trying to manage stars at a big club. Some managers just don’t have it..


Its shame that he thought Tott***** was the benchmark


It’s pronounced ‘shit’

Scott P

Not only that, he uses the 1 point from the last 5 games as if it’s something good. As in, ‘look where we finished despite this terrible run’. Well, it’s also his fault that the terrible run existed, so he deserves blame for that too.


Indeed, those last 5 games more than EL final defeat were what signed his resignation especially when you consider who they were against.

Good ebening and goodbye.


Board never really gave him players he specifically asked for. He wanted Nzonzi, got Torreira. He wanted Zaha, got Pepe. He wanted Ever Banega, got no one. Board wanted younger players who retain value, but in doing so he never got players to suit his system.

It begs the question why did we go with a manager who has a style so distinct from the squad he inherited. Absolute clusterfuck of people in power at Arsenal. Getting Edu in seems to have brought some sense of direction.


Agreed. And I think the board was going to originally go with Arteta, but the panicked and showed they have no backbone when the public started questioning the move due to Arteta’s inexperience. So, they went with the more experienced option and it failed.

Hopefully they’ve learned from their ball-lessness and maybe, just maybe, it worked out for the best and Arteta was able to grow and evolve more than he would have been able to as the man in charge at Arsenal over those couple of years.


Well said.


Wanting Zaha and Nzonzi just proves how bad he was. Both Torreira and Pepe are infinitely better players

Nacho de Montreal is tasty

I am not sure Pepe is better than Zaha though.


He will be though. Pepe is just a goal or 2 away from a massive confidence boost and watch him soar then.

Bai Blagoi

Pepe’s qualities aside, Zaha is pretty average benchmark.

Kash A Patel

Didn’t he pull the new contract away from one
of the three Captains(Ramsey),and now he is
bemoaning the loss??
Could argue that Ramsey’s late injury was a factor in missing Champions league and in the
Europa final.


He did not. Board did.

David Hillier's luggage

Emery had nothing to do with Ramsey’s contract, that was a boardroom level decision. Emery did many things wrong at Arsenal, let’s not blame him for those out of his control though.


How can any coach worth his salt, say this.
You cannot let your players go without a fight. If he truly believed in Ramsey, he should have fought for it.
I think letting Ramsey go was the right decision


We went for a coach who had taken Athletico to EL success and on the basis that he could organise a defence – failed miserably.


very subtle sarcasm! like!


Emery wanted Suarez and the club got him that. How did it turn out?


Emery was completely out of his depth, had no clue what the club was about and ultimately proved pretty bad at management at this level too. No doubt a terrible choice by the owners and the incompetent lot they’ve given the shop keys too. Finally, comparing him to Bruce Rioch, who signed Bergi, is an insult to a man who at least taught players some decent football.


Bruce Rioch had nothing to do with the signing of Bergi. David Dein did that.


Back in the day managers had real power. They weren’t there just to blow the whistle in training. Believe me, if Rioch didn’t want Bergkamp, there would be no Bergkamp. And that’s not to take anything away from Dein’s vision and role in taking the club forward, of course.


I was willing to accept that this guy just wasn’t the right fit and while he might have been an alright bloke, he was just out of his depth. But now I am actively beginning to despise him, trying to blame literally everyone other than himself. I imagine the Arsenal he “wanted” was something more like West Ham, Southampton or even Bournemouth.


The man is deluded if he actually believes things were getting better under his watch. We took a point in our last 5 matches, then got white-washed in a final at Baku yet this clown is asking for more time? He should have been sacked on the pitch at Baku but instead, he was given more time and some new players to assist him rejuvenate the squad; the result? Near disaster! We had players up in arms against fans, inconsistent tactics, confused players grappling with a confused game plan not to talk of the “Gud Ebening” press conferences which served… Read more »


Agree with the gist of your comment but there’s no need to mock his English. Try speaking in a new language yourself and see how well you do instead


While I agree that there is no need to mock anyone’s English, I’m pretty sure Emery did a Good Ebening thing on purpose. You don’t repete the same one liner again and again if you know people laugh at it, especially with all the help he received from the staff behind the scenes.


Spanish people often pronounce v like a b, just like English can’t do rrrrr. So no, not on purpose.


“The spanish Rioch”
Seems a lil mean on Rioch to me


Yes, at least he brought in DB10 (unless we credit it all to David Dein)


He never talks about his own failures, does he.


Jose. With second-rate hardware.

Artetas Assistant

Small man


In as much as he seems a good guy I am glad we got rid of him. He was never a good fit.


Have nothing but goodwill towards Bruce Rioch. He was great for us. And he squared up to McDermott.

Runcorn Gooner

……and he signed Dennis Bergkamp


This feels reactionary to recent players comments about, albeit indirectly, his leadership. I’m thinking of Leno’s “I don’t want to call it a mess (but it was a total shit-show)”


Emary has blamed everything except himself from day one. I don’t think he’s a nice man out of his depth, I think he’s a horrible little cunt who should never have been let loose in our club or with our players. He should just shut up, he makes himself look more of a fool every time he opens his mouth, and he’s done the same thing throughout his career, always blaming someone because he failed. I actually bought his autobiography and it told me all I needed to know about Unai Emery, and it pannned out exactly as expected. The… Read more »

Olivije Žirod

It wasn’t the results that failed him but the way he wanted to play. Game by game Arsenal was technically regressing. His style was always rigid and unexciting. Those 22 games unbeaten were never a representive sample of how he wanted to play. Why? Because it was still a mix of what Emery wanted to do and what they had in their head from Wenger.


I had a lot of respect for how he left the club with some dignity but it’s slowly dwindling. He hasn’t taken any responsibility since he left, instead adopting a blame anybody but me approach.

The rot worsened with him there and we’re no better off because of him.


Yes, his destiny is sitting in the Sky Sports team next to Gary Neville and criticising the other teams together.

Chipper 49

When he was sacked I thought his statement was classy and showed he was the wrong person for the job but a decent person nonetheless. He’s crapped all over that…

Magic City Gooner

He’s still talking?


Pyrenean Partridge would have been a nice alliterative flourish 😉


Who are these people that keep interviewing him? SMH


He was actually doing well until the last half-dozen games of last season. Then it all began to turn to shit. We had an easy run-in and should have finished at least fourth. But the players blew it and then carried the pathetic form into that car-crash EL cup final.

Before a ball was kicked this season he was doomed: he’d lost the players and the team were a shambles. That’s why he had to go.

Olivije Žirod

How was he doing well? We were horrible in the period between December and February. The loss against Bate Borisov was absolutely the lowest point we could get. Then he unfrozen Ozil and gave more chances to Ramsey. Together they almost saved our season. Then Ramsey got injured and we were shit again.


Had we finished 3rd or 4th he’d still be our manager. But we couldn’t beat Crystal Palace or Brighton. Who knows what would have happened if we’d qualified for the CL? With more time he might have turned it around. We’ll never know.


just one xhaka’s stupid penalty conceded, just one auba’s penalty missed….((((((((


we played shite during the 22 unbeaten tho


From what was said when he was around and since, my take is that he’s a decent individual coach, but an utterly shit tactician.


I think its the opposite. I think he is decent at tactics when he has to sit back against a top caliber team, and maybe producing one shot and a goal at the other end of the pitch. He was terrible as an individual coach as evidenced by a lot of the news coming out about how no one could understand his coaching or tactics.

Artetas Assistant

Seems like a shit/low quality individual coach to me. He’s so reactionary, sounding like uninformed spouses fresh out of a ‘toxic’ relationship, each convinced the other person is Narcissus ?? 

You need to stay positive to come out of adversity Stronger, Unai needs a large dose of ‘stay positive’. He’s completely missed a large lesson that could easily catapult him to the top 


He is done as a big club coach, not only from his performances at PSG and the Arsenal, but from this now public display of “dirty laundry.” This incessant blame game is the sign of a weak person. Maybe I can have some sympathy, but sure wish the club would have moved on his firing sooner than later.

Artetas Assistant

If he gets the help he needs (positivity and communication training) , he’s still a clever guy and will thrive somewhere . I won’t rule out a top level return especially when he proves himself somewhere

Ashburton Red

Do not understand his comments. Standard.


I know everyone was very cordial at the end with Emery, wishing him well, but I really disliked him. The football was terrible, the man management was terrible, the results were terrible…honestly, all this news coming out about there being no unity or clarification in the team…let’s just all come to the realization that Emery is actually a terrible coach and cannot hack it at the top level. And shame on Raul and co. for keeping this going for so long. And also Emery, you got a decent squad and a team that was not in chaos. We went to… Read more »


Who was responsible for dealing Nacho man?

Naked Cygan

This is exactly what I have been saying for past year. Someone needs to call out our players too. Our problems are not all on Emery. 1. The board should be blamed for their poor management of contracts, letting senior players go, leaving us with zero leaders. They should be blamed for the funding and poor recruitments. 2. Emery should be blamed for his shit tactics and poor player managment. This guy had no balls to pick a capitan. To be fair he didn’t have many choices, but I am glad he is gone. 3. The most important, our players… Read more »


Emery had all the experience in the world, look what happened. It’s not all experience, you have to find the right fit for the player and the culture of the club.


just go away

tanned arse

I think it’s pretty clear that he wanted arsenal to be a team that can nullify their opponents strengths and that would be our identity. Disregarding the fact that he was miles away from achieving that; NOBODY associated with the club shared that vision


Even the valid point that he makes, everything falls with just one thing Arteta mentioned when he took over. I will paraphrase it cause I can’t remember the exact quote, and that is that the team was not match fit. And he still points to that, that we can hold the intensity for 50 or 60 minutes. Then, the logical question rises, how in the world Emery did not manage to make the team match fit in year and a half period? And having failed at one of the most basic football points, why do we need to discuss anything… Read more »


Quite agree. Possibly, he under-estimated the physical demands of the PL. Season one should have made that clear.


Rather than engaging in any shit slinging I’ll just say I’m glad we have Arteta on board.


Fuck this guy.


I think Emery would be better served by saying less, learning from (and not harping on) the past and looking ahead to his next job.
For me, his biggest failing was not forging a style of play, coaching it and then sticking to it. That would probably get you fired anywhere.

djourou's nutmeg

he didn’t blame no one, he stated a fact: 4 of the 5 players he thought were the ‘leaders’ of the team, left. while not being the single reason for everything that happened, it surely changed something, didn’t it? is it wrong for him to mention it? besides, while he’s responsible too, it’s not like he didn’t have a full executive board behind him, or a whole team of coaches that shared his methods, so why make him responsible of everything? bad article, 20% relevant information and 80% hateful criticism


I know it’s stupid but I’m loving these snippets of our players riding camels and waving around sparklers in the club. It’s funny to me.

I’m just a bit concerned that it’s just trash and that I’m so dependent on arsenal that in this winterlull and its associated dirth of sweet arsenal content, I’m scragily clinging onto this dubai shit and kind of forcing myself to like it.

Eh just like dont think.


I see everyone slaughtering Emery, and I don’t blame them. But I would like to remind people of all the bullshit others had been saying throughout last season. After that 4-2 win over Sp*rs, the Sky Sports presenter asked if Emery had improved Arsenal’s mentality, and Jamie Redknapp answered, “ONE HUNDRED PERCENT”. He carried on kissing Emery’s arse for as long as he could in an effort to justify his previous “Wenger out” stance (which was born out of jealousy that his old man was made to look like a piece of shit by Arsene for nearly two decades). Emery… Read more »


Well in.

A Different George

The only time I can remember the “we’ve got our Arsenal back” was against Fulham, and especially Ramsey’s goal. Pretty much the only time we played like that in his entire tenure.


That Fulham game was when it was sung the loudest, but certainly not the only time it was sung. Besides, other songs and remarks of the same sentiment were sung and made to take digs at Wenger and/or justify their efforts to drive him out.
Anyway, you miss my point. Whenever Redknapp, Jenas, Wright, Murphy, Keown, Pougatch, or any other of these bullshitters give you their “expertise”, just remember that they all know fuckall.


to be fair….honestly, i never liked him(as a coach)and always feeled he was installed as a “yes-man”, someone who is steady to take the decision above and work with it. that’s obv not the way how we roll ;)….but/and he wasn’t someone who could handle our starlets in the first place and that was something which is to blame on the board neither than him as a coach, because it was evident from his time at PSG. And yes, the departures were a factor. For me, Nacho for example, was such an underistimated figure. don’t have to ring the bell… Read more »

The Arsenal

Should have been fired after we got slapped in the Europa final and the terrible end to the
Season. I feel sorry for him because if he and the squad had got those over the line it would have been a tremendous season and he would be right in his words. Does not matter if the margins are big or small you failed in the end and the negativity of those failures bled into this season not to mention new problems which just compounded everything

Spillane Durango

Is he practising the Joachim Low sniff technique in that photo ?.


“Emery blames everyone but self for disappointing tenure at Arsenal.”
He has not once mentioned any of the things players have come out and said were a problem under his leadership (confusing formations, tactics, instructions, etc), which leads me to believe he has learned nothing from the experience. Those who are in need of a head coach would do well to steer clear of Unai for awhile.

Dispossesed by Torreira

Except Tottenham obviously


Emery can take over Liverpool current squad n still end up in relegation battle. That’s how bbad he is. Clearly clueless. Almost every team including those the bottom, watford, villa etc outplayed us and having crazy shots at us. Mind you, we are Arsenal. Players completely lost confidence in him and even themselves. Probably the worst coach tt ever coached Arsenal.


Not just Arsenal. hes the worst ever. If i was to choose between the choise of putting any goalie i wanted in the net for spurs or giving them Emery i would have chosen him.

Dubai Ham

The same people who belittle Emery now were the same people who wanted Wenger out and didn’t want Arteta to take over prior to Emery.


he lost the plot the season but he does have a point about the player’s attitudes. Ozil will still be rubbish under draw king Arteta


Honestly hes the worst manager i have ever seen in any sport. Completely clueless and now hes blaming others? Surely there must be some sunday leauge team with no ambition who needs a manager?


to be fair, he has been pretty much self-crtitical all the way through, until yesterday, and protected the players all the way. check his interview to bbc (it is on youtube with subtitles). Only when all those parodies of the professional athletes like ozil and luiz, with leno joining them, have started barking up on him and leaking arteta’s boots, he had to defend himself. regardless of how good or bad his time was at afc, his analysis is pretty much spot on. to add to what emery is saying, it was just so obvious that the players got too… Read more »


Perhaps he’s hoping to get a statue outside the Emirates like Wenger?


Can he just f*** off now?

You tried, you failed, take it on the chin & get ready to manage another mid table Spanish club which will have decent cup runs


A bit unfai/disingenuous… to say he is Bruce Roiche… I mean his first season was decent enough. Fell a bit short of what was needed but still in 5th and into the europa finals. Second season he was NOT properly reinforced by Sanlehi. 1)Pepe was a lot of money but has thus far flattered to deceive. 2)Cback issue NOT resolved. Preference to extend an over the hill Koscielny instead. Saliba not available this season, Luiz no more than an older version of Mustafi and a panic buy at 6/7m…your Squillaci signing. 3) CM Ceballos is a Ramsey replacement but Torreira… Read more »


Emery was decent first season. He made timely effective substitutions for most parts and manage to string a number of uneaten runs. BUT he became a little too dogmatic second season particularly with playing out from the back. Also he began to second guess himself with substitutions making them either too late or bringing on the wrong options. Ultimately is issue was striking the right balance between going forward with attacking enterprise at expense of an unresolved leaky defense or holding prudence defensively at expense to goals. Arteta has had similar issues in recent matches. One of the things I… Read more »


Your boring blogs are starting to make my shit itch.Same old rubbish spouted day after day.Emery never had a system in place and all the shithousery that followed was fairly predictable.The players know where they stand with Mikel something you could not say about Emery.

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