Unai Emery was relieved of his duties as Arsenal manager today. It came after a poor 2-1 defeat at home to Frankfurt, following a string of shocking performances. The Spaniard lost the dressing room, took the team backwards from the Wenger era and looked clueless at the helm of one of football’s toughest jobs. However now, someone who knows the club well has taken over. Freddie Ljungberg.
Freddy Ljungberg has been appointed as interim manager by the Gunners. He’s been assistant first team coach for the side since the beginning of the season. Of course the top job is a completely different kettle of fish. However, I have a feeling the former Invincible’s arrival will see an upturn in results. Here’s why:
Freddie Ljungberg – Winning mentality
Ljungberg of course was part of one of the greatest teams in Premier League history. He’s been part of Arsenal’s golden era, winning 2 Premier Leagues and 3 FA Cups. As a result, he knows the ethos of the club and has that winning mentality fans have been demanding since the post-Highbury era. A legend of the club also commands respect. I won’t expect the players to down tools under the former winger, who they’re already familiar with.
Also, it’s not like Ljungberg has been out of touch with the club since his retirement from the game. In fact, he’s been in and around the club since 2013. In an ambassadorial role, coaching the U15s and U23s, now the first team. He knows the culture inside out and won’t need any time to adjust to the club. Perfect when you need points NOW.
I view it like the Ole Gunnar Solskjaer appointment as the time for Manchester United. Of course the interim one, NOT the permanent one. That would plunge the Red of North London into relegation. He arrived at a uninspired side lacking quality and fed up of the Mourinho era. Results improved instantly under the Norwegian and the Red Devils somehow found themselves in the Top 4 race.
Arsenal must tread with caution
I believe the former Swedish international can lift the spirits of the players. They were clearly sick of Emery’s time and will welcome change. He knows them well having spent the last few months with them, especially the youth players. It’s only inevitable that the atmosphere at the club improves and with that, hopefully results.
However, the club cannot afford to make the same mistake as United. Solskjaer performed well enough to get the permanent job at the biggest club in the league. Look how that’s turned out. Freddie Ljungberg should be given until the end of the season and no longer. That should be enough to galvinise players to challenge for the Top 4.
For more articles on the beautiful game, follow us on Twitter @TasteofFtbl