Arsenal head coach Unai Emery: New job is 'big challenge'

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery: New job is 'big challenge'

Arsenal hired Unai Emery as Arsene Wenger's successor on Wednesday in the Premier League club's first managerial appointment in 22 years.

Until the beginning of this week, former Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta - now an assistant manager at English Premier League champions Manchester City - was widely regarded as favorite for the job.

Guardiola is a known admirer after the Spaniard guided Valencia into the Champions League and won three straight Europa League titles with Sevilla.

Emery has the task of restoring Arsenal to the Champions League - and to ultimately deliver the club's first Premier League title since 2004.

Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke said in a statement on the official club website: "We're delighted to welcome Unai to Arsenal".

The club are seemingly keen to steer away from the model formed under Wenger, with Emery now expected to work closely with the pair in an attempt to bring success back to Arsenal.

Unai Emery Pep Guardiola
GETTY Unai Emery played against Pep Guardiola in La Liga

"It's a great challenge but in my career, every year I grow up with a new challenge", said the Spaniard, who made apologies for his English which he admitted is not yet the "best".

Emery, 46, left PSG this month after winning Ligue 1 and four domestic cups in two seasons in the French capital.

A 68-year-old Arsene Wenger has been heading Arsenal since 1996. "His hard-working and passionate approach and his sense of values on and off the pitch make him the ideal person to take us forward". We had a meeting on Monday.

A former midfielder with Real Sociedad, Emery coached Valencia from 2008-12 before taking charge of Sevilla in 2013, following a brief spell at Spartak Moscow. "All were interested in the position and we were unanimous in our choice of Unai to drive the next chapter of our history".

Emery also addressed his immediate priorities upon joining the Gunners.

Emery, who has no previous experience in England, has a reputation for having an nearly obsessive attention to detail, putting a large emphasis on video analysis and excelling at improving individual players - qualities that many have said were lacking at Arsenal during the latter part of Wenger's reign.

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