New Manager Unai Emery Relishing Opportunity to Solve Arsenal’s Attacking Conundrum

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Unai Emery is relishing ​the challenge of forging effective partnerships in Arsenal’s forward line, after inheriting a mishmash of players on his arrival at the Emirates. 

The Gunners have a host of star names to call upon, but integrating them with devastating effect remains a work in progress as the majority of the players continue to favour one of two positions. 

Arsenal FC v Manchester City - Premier League

​Arsenal have a plethora of attacking talent, but ​Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette both favour leading the line in the number nine role, whereas the likes of Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Aaron Ramsey and ​Mesut Ozil all prefer playing as the number ten. 

It ensures a natural inclination to move into the middle of the pitch is felt by the majority of the club’s forwards, leaving little impetus to stretch the game on either flank. 

To address the situation in the short term Emery has deployed Lacazette and Ramsey through  the middle, with Aubameyang and Ozil moved across to the wings. It’s a system which is still in its early stages and the Gunners boss is enjoying the challenge of finding a solution. 


“I enjoy it when we win. I’m very happy to have these strikers,” Emery aid, via the ​Evening Standard


Arsenal v Vorskla Poltava - UEFA Europa League - Group E

“Aubameyang needs confidence and to continue to find his best performance. I also have a lot of confidence in Lacazette and also maybe [Danny] Welbeck and [Eddie] Nketiah.

“They’re our strikers and I’m going to work with them and give them my confidence and the best possibilities in the attacking moment to score.”

However, although Emery is buoyed by the positive signs showed by his forward players, he admitted to being disappointed in the performance from players on the other end of the field after his sides opening Europa League clash. 

A 4-0 buffer was relinquished by the Gunners as Vorskla pulled two goals back late on on Thursday, and the lack of “a mentality of not conceding easy chances” was a point of dissatisfaction. 

“I’m confident with our defensive players but also we’re working tactically to be more compact, not just the defenders but the whole team. This process needs time but we need to improve,” he added.


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