Goodbye Unai: Arsenal axe struggling coach Emery
ARSENAL has axed manager Unai Emery after just 18 months in charge.
The Gunners have won just four of their 13 Premier League matches this season and are winless in their past seven matches in all competitions. It is their worst run of results since 1992.
Arsenal said the decision had been "taken due to results and performances not being at the level required".
The decision was taken following a dire 2-1 loss to Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League on Friday morning, when fans waved placards calling for the manager to be axed and booed at the conclusion of the match.
The Gunners sit eighth in the Premier League after 13 rounds, eight points shy of the Champions League places. Their last league victory came on October 6 against lowly Bournemouth.
An announcement by the club stated that Freddie Ljungberg, a club icon and one of Emery's assistants, would take over managerial duties while the club hunt a long-term replacement.
Swede Ljungberg,was a member of the famed "Invincibles" team that went unbeaten in the 2003-04 Premier League under Arsene Wenger.
"We have full confidence in Freddie to take us forward," the club announcement said.
"The search for a new head coach is under way and we will make a further announcement when that process is complete."
Emery, 48, was anointed Arsenal manager in May 2018, succeeding club legend Wenger at the helm.
The Spaniard had taken French heavyweights Paris St-Germain to the Ligue 1 title, and had success in European continental competition with a remarkable three Europa League titles with Sevilla.
In his first season in charge of the Gunners, the North London club finished fifth, just missing the Champions League and the significant financial boon that provides.
Arsenal also fell to Chelsea in the final of the Europa League, a disappointing 4-1 result robbing them of an alternate route into the Champions League.
This Premier League campaign started brightly, with back-to-back wins over Newcastle and Burnley.
Things soon soured with a loss to Liverpool, and derby draws against local rivals Tottenham and Watford.
The team limped to six draws and four wins in the Premier League from 13 matches, but a winless run of seven matches in all competitions was too much for the club hierarchy to bear.
Emery shrugged off repeated questions about his job security following the loss to Eintracht Frankfurt.
"Now our moment is not good. We need to win, take confidence and I think we are better than we are showing. The players, the coaches and myself," he said.
"I am thinking about the next match (against Norwich on Sunday (midnight AEST) ) and how we can improve.
"My work and my job is firstly analysing that match, how we are in the Europa League, in our feelings and how we are going to play on Sunday."
But when he arrived to work on Friday morning (local time), he was told that the next match was no longer his concern.