Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Arsenal promote Edu to Sporting Director

Arsenal have promoted Edu to the role of Sporting Director and confirmed the Brazilian has recommitted his future to the club.

It’s understood several clubs on the continent had shown an interest in poaching the 44-year-old from the Gunners.

Intriguingly, alongside the title change, Edu will assume an “over-arching responsibility for all Academy activities” in addition to his existing duties with the men’s and women’s teams.

Per Mertesacker, our academy manager, has been running the day-to-day operation at Hale End for the last four years, so it’ll be interesting to see whether this affects his status at the club. 

On the decision to promote Edu, CEO Vinai Venkatesham said: “We are delighted that Edu is recommitting his future to the Club that he so clearly loves, after making such a positive and critical contribution to our progress in his time with us so far.

“Edu’s promotion formalises his already growing influence over our Academy operations, and we look forward to Per and Edu working together to strengthen the integration between our men’s first-team and Academy yet further.”

Edu himself added: “I’m delighted to have this new role which I see as an evolution and consolidation of the way we’ve been working. We are making good progress in all areas of our men’s, women’s and academy and we are all excited about what can be achieved.

“I look forward to building on the hard work of so many people and helping all of us grow together and enjoy more success, and am thankful for the trust the club has put in me. We move forward together.”

Edu was recruited by Raul Sanllehi to become the club’s technical director in 2019. His remit was initially limited to signing players for Unai Emery but his duties increased within eight months when both Spaniards left the club.

Edu has since built a very strong relationship with Mikel Arteta who recently spoke of his desire to see his colleague stay at the Emirates.

“I just hope that he stays here for a long time because it would be a really positive thing for the club,” said Arteta in October.

“I work with him really well, I think he’s a super important figure at the club that represents all the values, all the ideas and everything that we want to do in the right way. Hopefully, that will be the case.”

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Good guy. I’m pleased we’ve secured him for a bit longer. Imagine the nightmare scenario of him doing a job swap with whoever has an equivalent brief at Chelsea or Man United!


This might sound strange but I am a bit worried by this move. Somehow we were flying high and everything working well. I would have been ok with Edu doubling his salary and everyone keeping their roles in this current set up. What if he brings back Kia and co? what if he interferes with Arteta or something? we had something working for the first time in years and although I wish Edu well I hope nothing changes. For now anyway.


Let’s not worry, let’s enjoy the upward trajectory and let the pros handle the business 😊


I’m pleased Edu is staying, but also feeling a little uneasy. Wouldn’t want Per to feel that his role was diminishing and looking for opportunities elsewhere.


Well deserved given where we have got to as a club this season. Obviously in life there is the possibilty of things going wrong but if Edu continues getting players through the academy plus young hungry transfers then we have a good chance of continuing the upward path we are on. Hopefully he has the power to sign up Saliba, Saka and Martinelli and gets that done asap.

Good luck to him going forward!

Boy Bastin

Yes, quite right. I’m sure he’s already closely involved with the club’s efforts to get the three players signed up but it’s probably all down to them now I suspect. Hopefully, we’ll get some good news (early) in the new year and everyone can concentrate on matters on the pitch.


Statement signing coming up in January?


As long as it’s not a Kia client at Kia’s house and not a left winger when the manager is crying out for a right winger to share the load with Saka. I am not saying everything was on Edu under Raul but I am not sure if it wasn’t with Edu too. I hope we aren’t changing the winning formula for one night of fun

Emi Rates

Let’s hope Kia had his keys to the club executive toilet taken off him when Don Raul was marched off the premises. Utter cunts the two of them.


I kinda thought he already was the Sporting Director. Atill good to keep this band together for as long as possibile. I’ve always been partial to a bit of Brazilian culture at Arsenal. Viva Os Artilheiros!!!?

Scott P

Think he was theoretically “Technical Director” until now. Not sure that it makes a world of difference in the title and responsibilities, with the exception of his expanded remit over the academy level.


Yes, he was technical director of the adult teams. Per was loosely responsible for ensuring an integrated approach at academy level, but now as Sporting Director, Edu is overseeing that alignment.

Brady’s bunch

Happy to see him come out from the Raul situation and make the the gig his own.

Man Manny

Edu Gaspar, Mikel Arteta, Per Mertesacker and Jack Wilshere; Wenger boys at the helm of everything football.


And maybe add a bit of Santi in the new year, too….

Boy Bastin

Possibly, but he’s got no coaching badges or actual coaching experience so his arrival (if it happens) is likely to be a while off yet. It would be good to get another “old boy” in though.




A la Pires 👍🏻


The Wenger boys are coming, and everybody’s jumping

Boy Bastin

Good news. He’s clearly had a positive effect and it was no surprise that other clubs were interested in luring him away. While I wasn’t really convinced that he’d leave “the project” at this early stage it’s reassuring to know he’ll be staying nevertheless. Onwards and upwards then.


Congratulations Edu. Like many others, in spite of his Invincibles status, I had my reservations about whether he was the right man for the job. Just like Arteta, an inauspicious start has been swept aside in an ever-growing tide of success – and you have to doff your caps to the pair of them – and, by extension, Josh Kroenke, who has proved that he is not all talk. In the past few years, the Arsenal board has hitherto been littered with more cowboys than the magnificent seven – but bidding good riddance to Raul, Gazidis and the rest of… Read more »


Indeed. I think Josh is quite instrumental to how things have evolved.

Emi Rates

I hope they didn’t fire Lili von Schtupp. She cooks a mean Schnitzengruben.


More beans, Mister Taggart?


Congratulations to Edu, and keep up the good work.

I think the key here is that he and Arteta are both singing from the same football hymn sheet, and have the support of the board & the owners.

Let “the process” continue!

Pat Rice and Beans

I confess I was a bit skeptical about him due his past experience in Corinthians and Brazil, but – thank God – I was completely wrong. Edu was/is fundamental to keep the ship afloat during turbulent times and his signings was spot-on.

Hope he maintain the good work with the first team and academy alongside Per.


Agreed. If Edu was a manager he’d be an Ancelotti as he gives off that vibe that he does nothing but constantly delivers. Maybe his personality is perfect chemistry for Arteta as I can imagine he’s a bit manic.
Calm down Mikel the work is done and the BBQ is on… everything is going to work out…

What happened with Corinthians/Brazil that made you skeptical?

Pat Rice and Beans

In Corinthians he started very well winning titles in his first years (2012/13) as a ‘manager’, specifically a link between the director board and the players. By the end of his tenure things started to went sour, but overall he did ok in Timao.

In Brazil I view his reign as a failure: the NT didn’t win the Copa America and was eliminated in the QF in Russia, playing a bureaucratic football and calling up some players that he and Tite had known from Corinthians.


Completely unrelated, apologies, but will the comment section ever be added to the app?


It’s very unlikely. Sorry.


He deserves a promotion. Does seem like managing the first team contracts and transfers would be a lot to do already though


“What do you think they’re smoking over there at the Emirates?”

Edu standing by his BBQ … lots of “hams”


Endrick would be a nice welcome present to the academy 🤘


“Committing his future” ?? So Technical directors have contracts now? I thought this was just like any other job, where you can quit with few weeks notice.


Edu and Mikel seem a good combination so far. Perhaps a precursor to signing Mikel to a longer contract ahead of the precursor to signing up the key talents which he developed, Saka, Marty and ESR


* developed into mature senior team players


I look forward to Edu stocking our academy with some S. American flair. The academy just became more interesting

It Is What It Is

Wenger-Dein MkII


I would hope that the board and owners understand that they cannot switch off because they finally have a manager who is getting consistent results with a lower budget like Wenger. And that they have the assumption that adding another layer to management gives them more corporate control without having to be hands on. . Afterall the goal of a franchise is to level up all entities in the franchise, even at the expense of one of them. History has shown us that Stan and Josh just don’t have time for Arsenal even missing important cup finals because it clashed… Read more »


Definitely warranted. Good for him.

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