Emery targeting ‘big performance’ against City

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Unai Emery says his players and staff are working hard in pre-season knowing they can kick-start the new season with a ‘big performance’ against reigning champions Manchester City.

Arsenal lost against Pep Guardiola’s side three times last season, including defeat in the Carabao Cup final, as they finished a disappointing campaign 37 points behind the runaway leaders.

Failure to secure a Champions League position for a second consecutive season ultimately led to Arsene Wenger’s exit, however, with a new coach, players and staff in place, the mood in the camp is one of optimism.

Speaking from Singapore where he attended an Emirates-sponsored business lunch, the Spaniard played up the importance of high-intensity performances.

“Everybody who is working at this club is working towards that game and we want to play a good game for everybody.

“It’s a great rivalry and to start at Emirates Stadium against Manchester City is the first important focus for us.

“With all the energy of the players and the supporters, we know we can start the season with a big performance against a big team.

He added: “Each match, you are looking for every player to transmit intensity, aggression, to show that they want to win and are prepared to work hard to win.

“We want to do that with style, with a personality, with protagonists on the pitch.

“We want every player to create things and find things when they’re on the ball.

“When we are without the ball, we also want to show ambition to recover the ball quickly.

“We want to demonstrate that not only in every match, but also in every training session.

“We want our players to be energetic, full of action with or without the ball and as protagonists on the pitch doing things.”

Arsenal will step up their preparations for City’s visit on 12 August with their first International Champions Cup friendly with Atletico Madrid on Thursday. The squad will then face Paris Saint Germain on Saturday before returning to Europe for games against Chelsea and Lazio.

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Chidi
Chidi

Whatever the result, I crave for a difference from the norm. Hopefully we’d come out on top of that game. Buzzing already… Loving the mood and the sense of optimism

Ayleym
Ayleym

In comparison to city we have had the majority of oir first team available for pre season. That with the added boost the new management will hopefully bring I’m actually excited about challenging city for the first game! Bring it on!

Hantal
Hantal

Honestly, I expect to beat city, most of their players are in World Cup recovery whilst most of ours aren’t. Our best are better than their reserve do

Mootilated
Mootilated

I would bloody well hope our best are better than their reserves.

Jdog
Jdog

Cue from the football following masses: ‘We ONLY beat city reserves’ if we win and ‘You couldn’t even beat city reserves’ if we lose.

Magneto
Magneto

That’s true, but ultimately I don’t give a XXXX what the football following masses think.

PeteyB
PeteyB

No need to mask profanity here so long as you are using appropriately. You are perfectly at liberty to say ‘I don’t give a fuck’, or ‘what do you think of shit?’, or, if you want to bust out the classics and score a few easy green thumbs, ‘John Terry is a Cunt’.

The capital C is intentional.

Goonerink

I don’t care, it could be a 6 pointer and vs the champions with a weakened team. I’ll take that first game, last game or any game tbf.

My answer to that quip would be along the lines of pictures and scorecards.
” Arsenal’ beat ‘City”
Maybe go deeper and sarcastically name every player who played fc vs all of city’s fc.

Goonerrific
Goonerrific

Put your bet on arsenal to win the league now, because once we beat city the odds will plummet.

yen
yen

Won’t settle for anything less than a goal for every point we were behind last season.

37:0 it is then.

Glocken
Glocken

I see that Gazidis was at that business lunch, no questions about him jumping ship to Milan then? It would be extrodinary timing if he went.

On City, that game is a free hit. City will be favourites and it’s up to the new manager and players to show what they can do. While the objective is of course champions league football, this season needs to be a transitonal one, away from the bad habits, complacancy and lack of preparation from the later Wenger years to a disciplined, functioning team from Emery with players picked on form and merit and not merely the managers favourites, hoping to cram them all in and it working like Wenger did over the last two seasons.

Game on.

Heavenly Chapecoense
Heavenly Chapecoense

Wenger gave a recent interview in France and said his biggest regret was to have stayed at Arsenal for so long. Didn’t seem out of bitterness but someone who has had the time to think about his life differently. He maintained the best manager isn’t the one who wins but the one who takes the best out of his players. He is open to doing other things than being a football manager.

A Different George
A Different George

In fairness, Wenger’s answer was to the first question asked (something like “after all those years at Arsenal, what’s your biggest regret”) in a pretty light format and his answer was half jocular (something like “well, maybe being there all those years”)–though he then elaborated in a more thoughtful tone.

   kaius
   kaius

You’ve invented your own version of what was asked and how Wenger answered because you can’t stand to admit that fans who said he’d stayed on for too long were proven right in the end.

He wasn’t asked about regrets – he was asked:

“What if you told us your biggest mistake?” and he responded:

“Perhaps staying at the same club for 22 years”, adding “I’ve been a prisoner of my own challenge at times.”

Arsene was interviewed on the pitch at Wembley by BBC Sport after we’d won the 2nd FA Cup in a row. Behind him were thousands of Gooners celebrating and waving flags in the stands. That was the last time I saw him looking truly happy on the pitch.

Would’ve been the perfect send-off. The players at that time needed a new voice, new leadership.

Now we’re now about 3 years behind our rivals who started rebuilding after Leicester’s title, and Arsene’s being linked with national team jobs (which he doesn’t really love) instead of the big European club roles that a man of his stature deserves.

Heavenly Chapecoense
Heavenly Chapecoense

I can confirm we listened to the same interview. Your quotes are exact.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

I’ve said it before, but I think Wenger is wasted in coaching. It’s too demanding for someone his age, takes too much time, and sadly he’s also past it.

His type of thinking should be more leadership and visionary for an organisation. That was his greatest strength, after all.

Time for something now. Personally, I’d love he took a stab at becoming UEFA President; changing that corrupt system inside out, then using that as a platform to take over at FIFA and gut that corrupt system to the core and ultimately influence all of football.

Heavenly Chapecoense
Heavenly Chapecoense

That is still possible. He did say in same interview that David Dein worked with FIFA on VAR. Wenger may be tempted to join his buddy in such projects.

Martin
Martin

There is no time that would be wrong for Gazidis to leave. He is a man who’s only thought is tightening the purse strings for the 6th richest football club in the world. Whilst we have him as CEO we will always lag behind the top clubs who are prepared top money for top players. I pray that the stories about AC Milan are true and he departs ver quickly

Rich
Rich

Chelsea in 2016/17 started badly, moved to 5 at the back, found momentum, won 13 on the bounce and used that momentum to push them to the league title.
City last season got a lucky point after going down to 10 men in the second game against Everton, then followed that up with a very late winner against Bournemouth, and then trounced Liverpool 5-0 after Sadio Mane got sent off, from there they built confidence and momentum.

Arsenal 2018/19…. If we can get 6 points from City+Chelsea???

Roof-attack
Roof-attack

This is great to hear! This is how i had hoped we were going to be play this season. how many times in the last five years did you see players trotting around the pitch when the opposition had possession of the ball? Too damn many!! Theo was one of the worst culprits for being passive when we didnt have the ball ,bless him , but maybe he was only operating to instruction. This feels like a fresh start for the club, players and fans. genuinely excited for the new season. if we can finish in the top four then i would call that a great season , regardless of cups or Europe. up the Arse!

gooner
gooner

So Theo it is. Was.

Pedant
Pedant

I want us still to have a chance of winning the league in February (and preferably later).

Finsbury Park Gooner
Finsbury Park Gooner

You need to recalibrate your expectations. Not in a pessimistic way, but expecting us to be challenging for the title this season is probably fanciful. If we do then it’d be a huge bonus, but we need to be careful we don’t all start expecting miracles in Emery’s first season. Top four (with a vastly improved points tally, more consistency and better team performances) would absolutely be a successful start to his career.

Pedant
Pedant

To try to make it clearer for you, I don’t want to have given up hope in January or before.

I’d be happy with 4th in February if there was some hope of winning the title then, even if we end up 4th at the end of the season.

Finsbury Park Gooner
Finsbury Park Gooner

So your level of satisfaction at the end of the season may depend on arbitrary factors completely out of the club’s control…?

At least you’re honest!

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

I hear that, but Finsbury’s Park Gooner’s point still stands.
It’s too much to be expecting so much in Emery’s first ever season. It took Klopp, Poch and even Pep at least a season to bed in his philosophy.

Rather than expecting a title challenge till Jan, how about we just expect to be in the top 4 battle. Anything else on top is a fantastic bonus.

But unrealistic expectations is something Gooners have been guilty of even during the Wenger years every summer. Let’s not start burdening the new manager with the same thing.

Mesut O’Neill
Mesut O’Neill

We’ll have the league tied up by January, never mind February 😁

Pedant
Pedant

With Mesut ‘your abject performance in the World Cup’ Ozil playing for us?

Pedant
Pedant

It is his words…

One of them is lying!
One of them is lying!

I am not expecting anything from this year…but at the start of every season, there is always a hope that we may win the title this year. Hope and expectations are two different thing. If one don’t have hope, then what’s the point of watching or supporting?

Futsboller
Futsboller

Love his way of designating all of his players as “protagonists” with or without the ball — we may struggle at times in this transition year and we might find it hard to crack through the top layer of hyper-spending clubs over the course of the season, but Emery’s tune already has me humming along.

Kinghenrythe14th
Kinghenrythe14th

Music to my ears!

HansRott
HansRott

In recent seasons we’ve had a few opening day omnifucks when we’ve been (top four) contenders … think Aston Villa, West Ham, Liverpool …

But now the foot’s in someone else’s boot. We’re second favourite with something to prove. And we should be pretty decently motivated to get off to a revivalist start thanks in no small part to our new manager and a very different approach both pre-season and pre-game.

We also know Man City are vulnerable early season, as are Chelsea, as we’ve beaten both in the Community Shield and with both City and Chelsea being a smidge depleted and under-prepared we have a better-than-decent chance of causing a brace of upsets albeit with no silverware at stake only some very valuable points.

With 20-20 hindsight it’ll all make perfect sense.

So, two wins and six points it is. Though, fuck knows, I still can’t imagine it’ll be easy.

Maxin In The Shade
Maxin In The Shade

Aggression. Protagonists.

I like hearing those words used to describe qualities Emery wants us to show.

Gudang Pelor
Gudang Pelor

Intensity, you forgot intensity.

Ross
Ross

We normally struggle in the first game anyway so anything more is a bonus, but as many say, it’s probably the best time to play them so fairly optimistic. Atleast we won’t be throwing points away against a team we should really beat at home

Tapps

I remember us struggling to beat Everton 6-1………

   kaius
   kaius

Those two back-to-back games against City were almost as demoralising as Paris ’06. I don’t care how we perform in these first two games, I don’t care if we play ultra-negative counter-attacking football. Just don’t lose.

Let’s take a cue from France and our Europa League nemesis Atletico. Toughness in defence, clever use of the ball, lightning-fast counters. The flair and style can wait.

afan
afan

im gonna keep an open mind for the first few games, and then see where we are

   kaius
   kaius

“im gonna keep an open mind for the first few games, and then resume trolling this site as usual”

New dawn
New dawn

Let’s kick some ass

Xhaka Demus, no Pliers
Xhaka Demus, no Pliers

Spent an hr in the online queue earlier to get my tkt on 3 devices – a laptop, tablet and my phone (I’m a red member so they released tkts this morning). Got it thankfully. For me top 4 would be the realistic goal along with an effective, consistent, recognisable approach to games. We have attacking talent. Fingers crossed we achieve more defensive solidity. And build from there. Can’t effing wait for the game now. Roll on August 12th!!

afan
afan

im looking at 5th or 6th, I think that would be more realistic

arsepedant
arsepedant

For who? Your team Tottenscum?

Me So Hornsey
Me So Hornsey

High intensity and aggression. Ambition with style. Hard work off the ball. I can’t wait to see the new boss walk the talk.

I’m excited for the first pre-season in quite some time.

A Different George
A Different George

The key to the season, obviously, will be how we play away. We were second to City, only 3 points back, at home last season. We were twelfth, a million points back, away.

420Goonerblayzeit
420Goonerblayzeit

He really looks like Al Pacino in Scarface in the banner photo. It’s uncanny really. It’s the haircut I think

   kaius
   kaius

The Old School Panini acct on twitter posted a picture of him during his Real Sociedad days next to a picture of Tony Montana. Note the haircuts too. It’s like good twin, bad twin.

(https://twitter.com/OldSchoolPanini/status/1016035213422587905)

420Goonerblayzeit
420Goonerblayzeit

Let’s hope his approach to the Premier League is similar to Tony Montana’s approach to Miami. I.E. this league is like a big juicy ***** waiting to be ******

One of them is lying!
One of them is lying!

Tony Montana, the perfect protagonist!

Ryan
Ryan

I love the new Boss’ statements, hopeful they translate to the field.

Mike A Terian
Mike A Terian

In previous years we have almost always gone into the new season under prepared, not having signed the players we needed to and with players returning late from tournaments. How good is it now to be in good shape for the start of the season and having a fresh and passionate manager rearing to go

jon

First season with a new manager.. I’ d give it sixth/seventh, which I think is acceptable. Realistically, we might never fight for gold again, unless we get an owner who is ready to match the spending of Chelsea, Liverpool and the Manchester clubs.