Manchester United legend-turned-pundit Gary Neville is pleased that Arsenal have chosen Unai Emery for the managerial role but remains surprised with the urgency with which the decision was made. Until Sunday, Mikel Arteta had been touted as the favourite for the Gunners job after allegedly agreeing on a three-year deal but the club have since made a surprise U-turn to discuss terms with Emery instead.
Reacting to the news, Neville replied to The Mirror’s John Cross saying: “He’s a brilliant coach John. Late change in the process?They’ve bounced all over the place on it! However,he’s a good appointment for Arsenal…the process a mess. You must have been hearing what was going on. Like a pinball…anyway the end result is a very good coach.”
Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta believes that winning a trophy would be a huge turning point for the club, according to the Daily Star.
The Gunners crashed out of the Champions League on Tuesday evening, after losing their two legged tie with holders Bayern Munich by three goals to one, but they still have an outside chance of clinching the Premier League title, and booked their place in the last four of the FA Cup by beating Everton last weekend.
Arsenal remain on course to end their trophy drought after booking their place in this seasons FA Cup semi-finals with a fine 4-1 win over Everton at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Mesut Ozil ended his goal drought to put the host in front on seven minutes with a composed finish, only for Romelu Lukaku to draw the visitors level just past the half-hour mark.
Jack Wilshere is set to return to Arsenal’s starting line-up for this evening’s Champions League last sixteen first leg against holders Bayern Munich.
Mikel Arteta is suspended, and will miss out along with injured quartet Thomas Vermaelen, Theo Walcott, Abou Diaby and Aaron Ramsey.
Arsenal have relinquished first place in the Premier League after being thumped 5-1 at Liverpool on Saturday afternoon.
The Gunners were four down with just twenty minutes on the clock after goals from Daniel Sturridge, Raheem Sterling and two from Martin Skrtel gave the hosts an unassailable lead.
Sterling then added his second and Liverpool’s fifth seven minutes into the second half before Mikel Arteta pulled one back from the spot with just over twenty minutes to play.
Chelsea are the new leaders after they beat Newcastle United 3-0 later in the day, while Manchester City are third having been held to a goalless draw at Norwich City.
Arsene Wenger’s men will now turn their attention to their visit of champions Manchester United on Wednesday evening, when Manchester City host Sunderland while Chelsea travel to West Bromwich Albion twenty-four hours earlier.
Mesut Ozil bared the brunt of the fans criticism after the games, with many voicing their concern over the Germany international’s lack of contribution in recent weeks, the Daily Star understands.
The 25 year old, who moved to the Emirates last summer for a club record fee of £42.5m, made just four touches in his own half at the weekend, and has scored no goals and made just two assists in the Gunners’ last eight games.
Arsenal are waiting to assess the fitness of Jack Wilshere, who is closing in on a comeback after missing the Gunners last two matches with an ankle injury.
Mikel Arteta may feature despite limping off during the last weekend’s win over Crystal Palace though Theo Walcott, Kim Kallstrom, Aaron Ramsey, Thomas Vermaelen and Yaya Sanogo all remain injured and Mathieu Flamini serves the second game of a four-match suspension.
Tags: Aaron Ramsey, Atletico Madrid, Bayern Munich, Diego Costa, Jack Wilshere, Jackson Martinez, Kim Kallstrom, Liverpool, Luis Suarez, Mario Mandzukic, Mathieu Flamini, Mikel Arteta, Porto, Theo Walcott, Thomas Vermaelen, Yaya Sanogo
Arsene Wenger is set to recall Wojciech Sczcesny and Olivier Giroud to the Arsenal starting line-up for this evening’s game at Southampton.
The pair were rested for Friday night’s 4-0 FA Cup fourth round win over Coventry City on Friday evening, though Giroud did make a cameo appearance, getting on the score sheet despite not coming on until the 79th minute.
Midefielders Aaron Ramsey and Mikel Arteta and defender Thomas Vermaelen are all set to return to the match-day squad after recovering from their respective injuries, though Jack Wilshere is doubtful with an ankle problem.
Meanwhile, the club have agreed a deal with sportswear company Puma, according to the Mail Online.
The German manufacturer will become the Gunners kit suppliers from next season, ending their twenty year partnership with Nike.
Elsewhere, Newcastle United have accepted an offer for midfielder Yohan Cabaye from Ligue 1 leaders Paris Saint Germain, Sky Sports understands.
Arsenal had been interested in securing the services of the France international themsleves, and saw a bid of around £10m rejected back in August.
However, the 28 year old now looks set to secure a move back to his home country, after two-and-a-half seasons with Alan Pardew’s side.
Arsenal could welcome Nicklas Bendtner for this evening’s FA Cup fourth round clash against Coventry City at the Emirates Stadium.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is pushing for his first start since the opening day of the season having made cameo appearances in the wins over Aston Villa and Fulham, though midfield trio Mikel Arteta, Tomas Rosicky and Aaron Ramsey all remain side-lined.
Tags: Aaron Ramsey, Aston Villa, Auxerre, Chelsea, Coventry City, Mikel Arteta, Nicklas Bendtner, Paul-Georges Ntep, Roma, Tomas Rosicky, Tottenham Hotspur
Arsenal will give late fitness tests to Tomas Rosicky and Nacho Monreal ahead of tomorrow afternoon’s Premier League clash with Fulham at the Emirates Stadium.
Rosicky may play with the aid of a mask after having an operation on his broken nose, while Monreal is doubtful with a foot injury.
Tags: Aaron Ramsey, Abou Diaby, Alvaro Morata, Chelsea, Fulham, Manchester City, Mikel Arteta, Nacho Monreal, Nicklas Bendtner, Real Madrid, Theo Walcott, Thomas Vermaelen, Tomas Rosicky, Yaya Sanogo
Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker has said that the club would welcome the signing of his international teammate Julian Draxler, the Mirror understands.
The Gunners have been linked with a move for the attacking midfielder, who manager Arsene Wenger is keen to mould into a centre-forward very much in the same mould as former Arsenal man Robin van Persie.
Tags: Aaron Ramsey, Bayern Munich, Coventry City, Fulham, Julian Draxler, Mario Mandzukic, Mikel Arteta, Per Mertesacker, Robert Lewandowski, Schalke, Thomas Vermaelen