Former Arsenal captain and defender Per Mertesacker has claimed that Unai Emery is showing that he was the right choice as manager following Arsene Wenger’s departure, with the club closer to the top four than the last season.
Emery was hired as the replacement after Wenger resigned at the end of last season, and the target was to return to the Champions League next season. Currently, the club are in fourth place and only one point behind Tottenham Hotspur, and with an easier run in.
Mertesacker, who is currently the Academy manager at the club, has said that Emery has shown that he is the right man for the job and has vowed to help him as much as he can.
“At the moment we are really happy with him,” Mertesacker told Goal. “How he evolves the game and brings something different to the club. Being here I am trying to support him as much as I can with my focus and my years that I’ve had being here.
“He knew before he came that it is required, in a way, that he trusts the youth. That he promotes that at the club. I think that came naturally to him at the club as well. If he sees good talent and trusts it, then he will let them play.
“It is not easy for him with the heritage of being the successor of Arsene Wenger. Being in that position, we have seen other coaches struggle at other clubs, with that scenario so I am trying to do as much as I can to support him. That’s my focus. I am very busy with that.”
It remains to be seen if Arsenal can get back into the Champions League next season, with the top four and the Europa League both remaining very viable routes to return to the competition.