English Premiership

Arsenal chiefs expect Champions League qualification

2019-10-12 19:28
Unai Emery
Unai Emery (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Arsenal boss Unai Emery has been tasked with leading the Gunners to a Champions League berth this season, according to the club's Head of Football, Raul Sanllehi.

The Gunners finished a point behind Tottenham in fifth place last season and lost the Europa League final to Chelsea to miss out on Europe's top table – their second consecutive season without Champions League football.

Emery though has been allowed to strengthen his hand this summer with Nicolas Pepe, Kieran Tierney, Dani Ceballos, David Luiz and Gabriel Martinelli arriving at The Emirates.

And speaking at a fans' forum on Thursday night, head of football Raul Sanllehi made it clear that Emery is expected to deliver Champions League football for 2020-21.

"We said to Unai that we just missed out on qualifying for the Champions League last year," said Sanllehi.

"But this year, with a stronger squad, we expect you to do that."

The Spanish boss, who took over from Arsene Wenger in May 2018, was handed a two-year contract after arriving from Paris Saint-Germain.

"Unai has an outstanding track record of success throughout his career, has developed some of the best young talent in Europe and plays an exciting, progressive style of football that fits Arsenal perfectly," said then Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis following the appointment of the 47-year-old.

The club do hold a 12-month extension option on that deal and it is a possibility they may decide not to exercise that option if Emery fails to deliver a top-four spot.

At the start of the season technical director Edu admitted that the club had to start "fighting for the Champions League again".

"I'm not saying [it's a] dream, but [we need to be] focused to be fighting for the Champions League again," he said.

Read more on:    arsenal  |  unai emery  |  soccer


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