Five things you might not know about Unai Emery

© Adam Davy/PA Wire

Arsenal are set to appoint Unai Emery as their new manager.

Manchester City assistant Mikel Arteta was one of the favourites to replace Arsene Wenger, but former Paris St Germain boss Emery is expected to be announced in the role later this week.

Here are five things you may not know about the Spaniard, who switched from player to manager in 2005.

Football runs in the family

Emery followed his family blood line into the game – both his father and grandfather, named Juan and Antonio respectively, were goalkeepers. The former appeared for several clubs in the Spanish second tier, whilst the latter competed with Real Union in the top division and his uncle Roman played as a midfielder.

Injury calls for managerial role

Emery’s first managerial post was at former Spanish third-tier side Lorca Deportiva, with whom he made over 30 appearances as a midfielder before succumbing to a knee injury aged 32 in the 2004-05 season and being offered the coaching job. He led them to promotion and from there he moved on to a four-year spell in charge or Valencia where he led the club to European qualification in each season before a short stint holding the reins at Spartak Moscow in 2012.

Personal achievements

During his successive spell in charge of Sevilla, Emery received a nomination for the FIFA Best Coach Award in 2015 – after a fifth-placed finish in LaLiga – but eventually lost out to then Barcelona boss Luis Enrique. He collected gongs for European Coach of the Season in 2013-14 and multiple LaLiga Manager of the Month awards at Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan, while more recently he was awarded the the Trophees UNFP du football, top manager prize at Paris St Germain.

Sevilla successes

Benfica, Dnipro and Liverpool were the teams beaten by Sevilla in Europa League finals between 2014 and 2016. The Portuguese giants were defeated 4-2 on penalties after a goalless draw in 2014, before the Ukrainians were downed 3-2 the following year. The hat-trick was completed with a 3-1 come-from-behind win over Liverpool in Basel two years ago.

Sporting connection

Emery is not the only sporting son from the Basque town of Hondarribia – golfer Jose Maria Olazabal, Masters winner in 1994 and 1999, also hails from there.




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