Unai Emery’s First Arsenal Press Conference

Unai Emery's First Arsenal Press Conference
LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 23: Arsenal Head Coach Unai Emery during his press conference at Emirates Stadium on May 23, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by David Price/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

David Ornstein broke the news the other day that the Gunners had a new manager. Now, Unai Emery’s first Arsenal press conference is over and fans have a chance to judge their new man for the first time.

Unai Emery’s First Arsenal Press Conference

Opening Statement

Unai Emery’s first Arsenal press conference started with some words from Ivan Gazidis. However, that is beyond the scope of this article and will be discussed further at a later date.

As far as the new manager goes, he had a few words of his own,

“Good afternoon everybody – I am honoured to be here with you. Also thank you to the Kroenke family. We travelled to Atlanta for a meeting with the Kroenke family and for me it was a very good meeting, a very good conversation with him and with his son.

“Thank you also to the chairman and the board. We had a meeting on Monday morning with them and also I feel that they feel Arsenal with their heart. The conversations with the chairman and the board were very important for me. There’s no better club than Arsenal.

“Also thank you Ivan, thank you Raul and thank you Sven. The first meetings with Arsenal people were with these three people who, after three hours, I had a very good feeling about working together and that we could create a new present and future Arsenal.

“Thank you, Arsène Wenger, for your legacy. For all the coaches over the world, he’s a reference and I learned from him all the things in football.

“My English is not very good now and I want to make an effort to speak with you, to the supporters, to explain my ideas, to explain my ambitions, to explain that I am very excited about this opportunity. It’s a big club, a great city, a grand stadium and also has great players for this work. Thank you.”

Style & Players

Unai Emery’s first Arsenal press conference was always going to include questions about tactics and personnel. The Spaniard had plenty of fine words for the media,

“In my career, I [have been] very demanding [on] myself. I want people here who are demanding also, and players who are demanding also. My idea is to be protagonists. We play against all the teams with this personality. The history here is a team that love playing with possession of the ball. I like that personality, I like these protagonists with the ball. When you don’t have possession, I want a squad that are very, very intensive with the pressing. The two things are important for me to be protagonists: possession of the ball and pressing when you don’t have the ball.”

Mesut Özil’s name came up,

“He’s one of the biggest talents at Arsenal and I want talented players here. I want to spend time with all of the players, I want to speak to them on a level about how inspired I am and how excited I am to be here. I want the players to feel that as well. Above all, I think this is a wonderful project and we all need to give 100 per cent. That’s what I’m looking for, from every player and myself.”

And then Jack Wilshere‘s,

“Today, I want to speak about the team collectively. I don’t want to speak about the players individually today. All the meetings with Ivan, Raul and Sven… this team is a big team, big players, good players and we think we need to change little things. A few players. Today, I want to work, I want to speak about the squad globally.”

Target

Finally, Unai Emery’s first Arsenal press conference took a turn toward the future. Specifically, what goals the new manager has set for himself and his team,

“I believe the players who are here, the objective is to work together, to work hard with this talent. The target is to be a candidate and to challenge for the title. It is very important for the club after two years outside the Champions League to work this way, to be the best club, the best team in the Premier League and also in the world.”

And his targets for the upcoming season,

“Developing – but how do you develop? I think that’s about battling for every title. That’s something that’s in Arsenal’s history, it’s in my history as well and I want that to continue. Our objective is to be among the best in Europe, so those are the two objectives. I also want the team to make the fans proud. I know they are already but I want them to be even more so.”

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