Unai Emery 'so grateful' for Arsenal experience and backs Gunners for Premier League glory despite Man City defeat
- Took charge of Gunners for 18 months
- Fired amid woeful form
- Now about to host them as Villa boss
WHAT HAPPENED? It's been a rough spell for Mikel Arteta's men of late, who have lost twice and drawn once in their last three Premier League outings. This means Arsenal have fallen behind Man City in the title race and must now travel to face former manager Emery and his new team at Villa Park on Saturday lunchtime.
WHAT THEY SAID: Speaking ahead of the game, Emery said: "Arsenal are a really good team in a very good moment. Their last matches won’t change the confidence, and how they are progressing, how they are playing and their possibilities to win the title this year."
He added: "At Arsenal, I had very good experiences. I enjoyed it there. I was there for one and a half years. I’m so grateful to Arsenal, to the owners, to the supporters, to the players. But I’m very grateful to everybody here and I will use my experiences from my time at Arsenal and get better with Aston Villa."
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Emery was sacked from his position at Arsenal back in November 2019 after 18 months at the helm, leaving the club on longest winless streak since February 1992. In his first and only full season, he narrowly failed to help the Gunners qualify for the Champions League, losing a Europa League final and finish fifth in the league.
IN THREE PHOTOS:
DID YOU KNOW? Emery has never lost against Arsenal, playing against them four times, drawing on three occasions and winning once.
WHAT NEXT FOR ARSENAL? The Gunners can momentarily go top of the league against if they beat Villa on Saturday, while Emery's men will be hoping for a win that could put them level on points with Chelsea in tenth.