Unai Emery sacked: Who will be the next manager of Arsenal?

Arsenal are on the search for a new manager
Arsenal are on the search for a new manager

Unai Emery has been sacked by Arsenal. Tom Carnduff takes a look at some of the contenders in the market to replace him.

A 2-1 Europa League defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt on Thursday made it seven games without a win for the Gunners - their worst run since 1992.

That proved to be the final straw for the Arsenal hierarchy - who moved to dismiss Emery from his position at the Emirates Stadium on Friday morning.

Here, using odds from Sky Bet (correct as of 1000 GMT 5/12/2019), we look at the contenders to replace him.


Massimiliano Allegri

Sky Bet odds: 3/1

Massimiliano Allegri has been linked with a move to the Premier League
Massimiliano Allegri has been linked with a move to the Premier League

The Italian left his position as Juventus head coach at the end of last season having been in charge in Turin since joining from AC Milan in 2014.

Allegri won the Italian league title in each of his five seasons in charge while his trophy haul with the Bianconeri also includes four Coppa Italia titles, with last season being the only time during his reign that they failed to secure the domestic double.

Despite success on home soil, Allegri was unable to deliver the biggest prize in European club football, losing two Champions League finals - against Barcelona in 2015 and Real Madrid in 2017.


Brendan Rodgers

Sky Bet odds: 7/2

Brendan Rodgers was around 28/1 in the immediate aftermath of Emery's sacking but Sporting Life columnist Charlie Nicholas - as well as other pundits - started talking up the chances of the former Liverpool and Celtic boss taking the reins.

Rodgers is now just 3/1 second favourite having taken Leicester to second in the table and Liverpool's unlikeliest nearest challengers to the title and Sunday's last-gasp 2-1 victory over Everton made it six Premier League wins on the spin.

However, when asked if he was staying with the Foxes, he said: "Yeah, very much so. It doesn't annoy me. I don't think so much about it. It's not in my control. I came here to help the project and see if we could bring it forward. I'm at a great club. I absolutely love it here."

Was that convincing enough?

If the call came from Arsenal, he'd have plenty to think about given the potential long-term success - and the 'big club greatness' that goes with it - could be more likely with the Gunners.


Freddie Ljungberg

Sky Bet odds: 4/1

Freddie Ljungberg has been a part of the Arsenal coaching staff
Freddie Ljungberg has been a part of the Arsenal coaching staff

Ljunberg returned to Arsenal in 2016 as he took over one of the youth sides and then graduated to becoming a permanent part of Emery's backroom staff.

He has also been placed in caretaker charge while the search for a permanent replacement goes on, although he did say prior to the weekend's draw at Norwich that he wasn't seeking the full-time job.

That role as caretaker has seen him move into a short price - with a decent spell in the dugout potentially leading to him landing the role on a full-time basis.

The worry for Arsenal in the long run would be his lack of experience, with a strong argument being made that Arsenal can't afford to gamble on a risk at this point.


Mikel Arteta

Sky Bet odds: 5/1

Pep Guardiola and Mikel Arteta watch Manchester City in training
Pep Guardiola and Mikel Arteta watch Manchester City in training

Arteta reportedly impressed Arsenal when they spoke to him as they searched for Arsene Wenger's replacement - and he continues to earn the plaudits in his coaching position at Manchester City.

Pep Guardiola has previously spoke of how highly he regards Arteta and has made it clear that he expects him to stay until at least the summer - with both the Gunners and Everton linked.

Like Ljunberg, the issue for Arteta could be his lack of experience and his high odds following the news of Emery's sacking shows how he is currently an unfancied option.


Patrick Vieira

Sky Bet odds: 6/1

The Arsenal legend became captain in 2002 and went on to lead the Gunners during the 2003/04 Invincibles season, so he'd undoubtedly be a popular choice with the fans.

Vieira is yet to build an impressive CV as a coach and so far his jobs have been the Manchester City reserve team, New York City FC and, currently, French side Nice.

They finished seventh in his first season and although they are currently lacking in form in the bottom half of the table, this has not stopped reported interest from the Gunners.

Mauricio Pochettino

Sky Bet odds: 8/1

Mauricio Pochettino's Tottenham have won just one of their last seven matches in all competitions
Mauricio Pochettino was recently sacked by Tottenham

This would be a controversial appointment, but in terms of available candidates, it would be a positive move.

Pochettino ended his five-year association with Tottenham last week after he was relieved of his duties. Jose Mourinho, who was long-linked as a potential replacement for Emery, became Pochettino's successor.

The likes of Sol Campbell, William Gallas and Emmanuel Adebayor are just some of the names to have played for both Arsenal and Tottenham. Could Pochettino make a similar move?

He could also follow in the footsteps of Terry Neill, who left Tottenham in 1976 and then took up the role at Arsenal as his next job.

George Graham is a more recent example of a manager who has been in the home dugout for both Arsenal and Tottenham.


Nuno Espirito Santo

Sky Bet odds: 12/1

Nuno Espirito Santo speaks ahead of Wolves' clash with Braga
Nuno Espirito Santo has impressed at Wolves

The Wolves boss has been backed into one of the favourites after a number of impressive seasons in charge of the West Midlands outfit.

Reports say that Santo is in the running for the position with Arsenal obviously aware of his efforts at Molineux.

Santo transformed a Wolves side who were nearly relegated to Sky Bet League One into one now competing in a European competition. Their appearance in the Europa League was secured in their first season back in the Premier League.

It shows the current status of Arsenal that they will have to make a very tempting offer in order to prise Santo away from his current project.


Eddie Howe

Sky Bet odds: 12/1

Eddie Howe is one of the best youngest managers around
Eddie Howe continues to be linked with jobs higher in the Premier League table

If Arsenal did not want to go for 'tried-and-tested winners' and instead look for promise and potential - they could do much worse than look to the Bournemouth boss.

Howe is now enjoying his fifth consecutive season as a Premier League manager having led the Cherries to the promised land in 2015 and has finished ninth, 12th and 14th in the past three years.

Could he make the step up to a side challenging for honours as well as managing a bigger budget? It would be an interesting watch, especially as the 41-year-old encourages attacking football.


Carlo Ancelotti

Sky Bet odds: 20/1

Carlo Ancelotti is currently in charge of Napoli
Carlo Ancelotti is currently in charge of Napoli

A name who has been backed in since the news of Emery's departure is Carlo Ancelotti.

He is someone who has an incredible trophy tally in management. Ancelotti boasts a Champions League title, a Premier League winners' medal and a Bundesliga crown amongst others in his managerial portfolio.

There's no doubt that Arsenal possess some talented players in their squad, although Ancelotti will likely demand some form of transfer budget in January to recruit further. He bought Gareth Bale and James Rodriguez in during his time in Madrid, spending around £150m to bring in the pair.

The Italian coach also oversaw the £50m addition of Fernando Torres at Chelsea, whilst Thiago Silva and Lucas were big-money signings at Paris Saint-Germain.

It can't be denied that the players mentioned are world-class level, but whether Ancelotti would have that level of finance available at Arsenal remains a concern.

Julian Nagelsmann

Sky Bet odds: 33/1

Julian Nagelsmann speaks to the media
Julian Nagelsmann moved to RB Leipzig in the summer

Leipzig boss Julian Nagelsmann has less experience at top level management than others vying for favouritism in this market but his stock is rapidly rising in Germany.

When he came into his first job at 1899 Hoffenheim in February 2016, they were 17th in the Bundesliga standings, seven points from the safety of 15th spot and facing relegation. Under Nagelsmann, they avoided relegation by winning seven of their remaining 14 games and finished a point above the relegation playoff spot.

He’d go significantly better in 2016/17, guiding Die Kraichgauer to 4th in the table and securing a spot in the UEFA Champions League, although Liverpool would knock them out in the qualifying round before a disappointing Europa League campaign followed.

Domestically they came third in 2017/18 to earn another crack at the Champions League - only to end up bottom of their group - and after a relatively disappointing ninth-placed finish in his final season, he headed for Leipzig.


Odds correct at 1105 GMT (29/11/19)

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