Emery : with time, you can only take care of technique and attacking freedom, losing your defensive structure.

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Emery : with time, you can only take care of technique and attacking freedom, losing your defensive structure.

Post by Adit on Thu Nov 22, 2018 8:43 pm

Why do you think Arsenal chose you? You were not the only candidate.
"As Ivan Gazidis [ex-Arsenal chief executive] explained on the day of my presentation, I was part of an eight-man shortlist that they interviewed, and it is thanks to Arturo Canales, who insisted to them that I was the best candidate."

And how did you convince them?
"In the past, teams had already approached me with their decision made: Paris Saint-Germain, Sevilla, Valencia, Spartak Moscow, Almeria... I wasn't used to being another candidate and putting my arguments across. I prepared for the meeting with my staff. I went into it with the doubt of my English speaking, but they always said that this wouldn't be a problem. And I spoke to them very naturally that day."

Then came the appointment.
"These days, it's very difficult for a coach to last 22 years. The chairs had to be moved in all sectors of the club. And not because of previous negligence, but to motivate everyone again: to shake it up, to sweep things under the carpet, to open the windows, all positive things. Once, I learnt from Javier Irureta [legendary Basque coach] that if they ask you to make changes, you have to do it. And I got to work in implementing my ideas."

Did you speak to Arsene Wenger?
"Not about the team. I ran into him once and not many more times. I respect him a lot, but no matter how much information he gave me, I had to change things. I told the players 'we are starting at ground zero'. Even now, four months later, I still say 'we are just at the beginning!'"


As an example, is it true that you have introduced more gym work to training?
"Here there was a fitness coach who continues his work. We haven't changed that. Only little details like putting a gym next to the pitch to make the transition from gym to pitch easier. Purely methodology. The same idea remains as before."

There was the story that you replaced juice with water, more control with the players' weight. Are these true or is it just media speculation?
"There were habits that we could improve on in terms of nutrition. Together with the nutritionist and the fitness coach, we decided to get rid of juice with sugar, but that's normal and what I do at home: eat without sugar, less fat, healthier food. That's it."

It seems like you are a meticulous coach.
"I find it funny every time people say that. Once a Chinese coach came to see us at Sevilla and he repeatedly said to me: 'Unai, your work on the details has impressed me'. And it stuck with me. I said to myself: 'Well that's a positive!' But it can also be negative, you might say, a bit tiresome, wanting to influence the players too much, so I don't know. What I do is work hard. I look at the 90 minutes and analyse openings, where the space is etc. Then I transfer that to video and show the players."

And they understand?
"I think there are moments when the players should express themselves. To find the balance between this and the well-known details.

Your Arsenal can be misleading: sometimes you have the ball, sometimes you counter-attack... how would you define your style?
"Before Wenger arrived, Arsenal celebrated the 1-0 wins and were based on defensive solidity. With Arsene, they became an attacking team, with players who were good on the ball. And the perfect combination came with The Invincibles [in the 2003/4 season when Arsenal won the Premier League and remained unbeaten]. But with time, you can only take care of technique and attacking freedom, losing your defensive structure. What I want to do is unite the two and become more competitive. Arsenal were falling. We had to stop that and start to lift them.


Are they now on the rise?
"I want to create a team that know how to exploit the space, are able to counter-attack, or when there's no space, calmly find a way to create openings. We are in that process: create an idea, a style, be competitive. We came to an Arsenal that hadn't beaten any of the Top 6, and while we still haven't done so yet, they also struggled to win away from home at all, and we have already improved in that area."

Are Arsenal now considered as a step below the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham?
"We can improve this team. I want to be demanding. I am delighted with the treatment of the club in all areas, but I want them to be demanding of me because I will then push the club forward. I want to be demanding of myself, the team and the club. The Premier League is different to how it was 20 years ago, when City and Chelsea weren't the same teams, and Everton were stronger. Money has changed everything. And Arsenal must be great, not allowing the four above to take advantage of us [there's also Manchester United] and not allow the teams below to get closer to us."

Let's talk about some individuals: you took your time giving Lucas Torreira a start. Why was that?
"Because you have to respect hierarchy. [Bernd] Leno arrives, but [Petr] Cech is doing well and you must respect that. Petr was first. The same thing was true with [Matteo] Guendouzi and Torreira, who arrived later. I gave him [Guendouzi] the chance first, which I was delighted about, but now he's not playing as much and Lucas is."

You have played with two forwards: [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang and [Alexandre] Lacazette. That didn't really happen before.
"We are in a process. It will work for one game, but then not for another. You have to look for answers to all different matches. I love analysing them. When I left Valencia, I told the president that I was more analytical of coaches than of players. I don't have time to analyse players. I am more tactical. Wenger, for example, was more about pure football, more of a player coach."

Arsenal are unbeaten in 16 matches, in all competitions. What does that mean?
"That there's still a long way to go. We have had four draws in the last five games, and we need to push the team forward now. I have spoken to my team during the international break. Our objective is to be in the Top 4, but it won't be easy. Every year it becomes even more difficult to be up there. Everyone was happy against Liverpool [1-1 draw] but we only drew. It's not enough."


English football is tougher than other leagues. Myth or reality?
"Maybe because every team have one or two players of a high level, given the financial power. The best players come here, with the exceptions of Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, PSG, Juventus and few others. And every time the best coaches also come: Pep [Guardiola], [Jurgen] Klopp, [Jose] Mourinho, [Maurizio] Sarri, [Mauricio] Pochettino."

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Re: Emery : with time, you can only take care of technique and attacking freedom, losing your defensive structure.

Post by Warrior on Thu Nov 22, 2018 8:55 pm

Allegri's philosophy >>>

(it's basically the opposite)
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