IslingtonTribune

The independent London newspaper

Arsenal’s pursuit of new boss sends press the wrong way

Unai Emery is confirmed as Arsene Wenger’s successor at the Emirates Stadium

25 May, 2018 — By Richard Osley

Unai Emery becomes the Gunners’ first new manager in 22 years. Photo: Вячеслав Евдокимов

ARSENAL left the world’s press chasing shadows as they secretly made plans to hire new manager Unai Emery.

The 46-year-old Spaniard was confirmed as Arsene Wenger’s successor on Wednesday, but only after most media outlets had claimed former player Mikel Arteta was on the brink of being appointed.

The club’s extraordinary ability to shield Emery from the guessing game was revealed when chief executive Ivan Gazidis said that, rather than the final choice being a late change of heart, there had been three meetings and interviews.

Mr Gazidis said Emery – who bookmakers had listed as a 66-1 shot to take the job – had even been flown to the United States to meet Arsenal’s majority owner Stan Kroenke in Atlanta.

The former Sevilla and Paris St Germain manager had been Mr Gazidis’s preferred candidate from a shortlist of eight, having first been inter­viewed two weeks ago – again without the press suspecting.
Emery, who has a three-year contract, becomes the club’s first new manager in 22 years.

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