‘HE’S GONE’, ‘good ebening’ and ‘Unai Emery’ are trending on Twitter. It doesn’t take TV detective Jake Peralta to figure out what’s happened here.
Yep, Arsenal manager Unai Emery has been given the boot, after seven games without a win – Arsenal’s longest barren run since 1992.
It comes after Mauricio Pochettino’s immeasurably-more-surprising departure over at Tottenham, and leaves the managerial landscape within the ‘big six’ sub-economy looking like none of us would dared to have imagine it a year ago.
Tottenham sack Mauricio Pochettino
Arsenal sack Unai Emery.
Both North London clubs change managers in the space of 10 days. pic.twitter.com/Lvrorsa9Ws
— Squawka News (@SquawkaNews) November 29, 2019
Still, after defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League, you can feel sorry for Emery while also understanding the decision taken by the Gunners hierarchy.
Good ebening, and good night! Sad day…
— Younes H-Hamou (@youneshh) November 29, 2019
We have always been clear that the real issues lay with the owner. We wish Unai Emery all the best.
We stay focussed on the ownership and custodianship of our club.#WeCareDoYou
— AFC_WeCareDoYou? (@AfcWecaredoyou) November 29, 2019
Emery leaves them eighth in the Premier League, eight points off the top four, though, and fans had been calling for it for a while. Some haven’t been quite as sympathetic.
Unai Emery sacked!!!
Hats off Arsenal . Sacking Unai Emery on Black Friday to get discount off his payout
— FAROUQ (@farouq_yahaya) November 29, 2019
Can’t say I’m sad to see Emery go. There was some promise early on, but it fizzled out last season, and this season has been a disaster.
He never quite felt the right fit, the football was too often poor, and this bad spell was allowed go on too long.
Let’s see what’s next! pic.twitter.com/evPkbcfnsn
— arseblog (@arseblog) November 29, 2019
Freddie Ljungberg will assume managerial duties in the interim, having served as part of Emery’s coaching staff throughout his second season in charge.
The Swede is highly thought of at the Emirates after more than 200 appearances for the club as a player, and fans are excited to see what he can do.
1 – Freddie Ljungberg will be the first Swedish manager to take charge of a Premier League game Sven-Göran Eriksson, whose last game in the competition came in May 2008 in charge of Manchester City (an 8-1 defeat against Middlesbrough). Smörgåsbord. pic.twitter.com/gyiKEKzQkG
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) November 29, 2019
A few people have asked what Ljungberg is like as a coach – likes to play out from the back, midfielders making dynamic runs, lots of pressing. Always very encouraging of players during the game. Argues with officials a lot.
— Jeorge Bird (@jeorgebird) November 29, 2019
‘Who’s next?’ has become the pertinent question in the wake of the news, and it takes on a double meaning.
Arsenal fans have of course been speculating over who will replace Emery in the long run.
My preference would be to go for an established name over an ex-player like Arteta. Pochettino, Allegri, Ancelotti all appeal. My #1 would be Pochettino. Like Sol Campbell could become gargantuan and would have a point to prove to Levy after being sacked. It would be so so sweet.
— FK ☕️ (@fkhanage) November 29, 2019
Raul Sanllehi and Edu will lead Arsenal search for a new head coach and they will be the ones recommending a name to the Kroenkes. Ancelotti, Nuno and Arteta are in the radar [@SamWallaceTel]
— Arsènic™ (@MrArsenicTM) November 29, 2019
Arsenal fans, who do you want as the next Arsenal manager?
— Scott Saunders (@_scottsaunders) November 29, 2019
Could we be about to see a Black Mirror-style plot twist?
Neutral onlookers, meanwhile, wonder which manager will be next to go. Manchester United, fresh off the back of an embarrassing defeat in Kazakhstan, sit a point behind Arsenal in the Premier League table…
All-in, it’s been quite the ride for Emery in North London. He might not be remembered for his side’s performances, but at least he had nice manners.
It may not have gone to plan at Arsenal, but Unai Emery might just have been the most polite manager to grace the Premier League
For one last time…pic.twitter.com/73Xp7j4rfU
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) November 29, 2019
God speed, sir.
For more from Robbie Copeland, follow him on Twitter!