On Monday Night Football this week, a fierce debate was had between Jamie Carragher and Gary Neville about whether Unai Emery should have to adapt his philosophies at Arsenal in order to get points early on in the season. Carragher argued that it’s a manager’s job to win football matches so you must do that any way possible with the team that you have, whereas Neville argued that he is a man trying to build a team who could win the title in the coming years, therefore adapting and changing his style so early on in his reign would massively undermine him.
One reason many people say that Emery should change his style is because Arsenal are a big club who expect to win most of their matches, so you must achieve that goal by any means necessary. In the last decade, football has become all about the short-term success over building a team for a sustained period of dominance. There are so many examples of this in the last few years: the constant changing of managers at Chelsea under Roman Abramovich in order for them to win the Champions League, relegation threatened Premier League clubs bringing in firefighter managers like Sam Allardyce to keep them up so they get the TV money; clubs such as Portsmouth spending money that they don’t actually have so that they win a trophy but then suffer long-term loss. All of these cases resulted short-term success at a club, so many people may want to see Emery adapt in order to bring Arsenal the joy that they haven’t experienced in the last few years considering the results haven’t come yet because of the players at his disposal. Mesut Ozil for example isn’t the type of player of presses from the front, so some argue that until he is able to bring in his own players, the new Arsenal boss should adapt to do his job well. However, the counterpoint to that is that Arsenal have been one of the few clubs who have thought more about the long-term with building a new stadium and bringing through promising young talent for cheap, the infrastructure of the club that Emery has come into is very well planned out with everything set up for him to succeed. Therefore if after only two matches and six weeks with the players (and even less with those who competed in the World Cup) he decieded to stray away from his managerial approach in order to get results this early on would be scandalous. So far Arsenal have played Manchester City and Chelsea in the league, two incredibly strong sides with an unheard of amount of wealth, and in both of those matches Arsenal were beat, but even though there were various negatives about the performances, there was also a few positives to take away as certain players are grasping Unai Emery’s style better than others. A prime example of this is French yougster Matteo Guendouzi. The 19 year old was brought in this summer and has immediatly fit right into the team, and he is playing how you would expect a midfielder to play under Emery, he is constantly pressing the opposition, passes quicky and always looks for the ball forward. So if Arsenal suddenly moved away from their modern day football, players like Guendouzi would suffer for it.
This shows how important it is for Emery to stick with his current philosphy as this season would always be seen as a transitional season for the gunners, with many of Wengers players still there, it will take at least three transfer windows for Emery to get a side that he is happy with, so at the start of next season it will be an easier observation to make about whether his philosphery has paid off or not.
Do you think that Unai Emery should adapt his managerial style or not? Let us know in the comments