Erik Ten Hag Should Top Any Potential Arsenal Managerial Shortlist

After watching his side lose to Premier League newcomers Sheffield United, Arsenal boss Unai Emery must have known people would be discussing his future at The Emirates.

The Spaniard’s job was up for debate in September when they threw away a two goal lead to draw with bottom of the table side Watford. Yet The Gunners bounced back and had gotten themselves back into third spot and just a point off last season’s champs Manchester City as they headed into last weekend’s fixtures.

But alas inconsistency has been Arsenal’s unwanted bedfellow in recent years and it reared it’s ugly head again at Bramall Lane last night as a Lys Mousset goal was enough to give the home side the victory (BBC Match Report).

The latest loss has left Arsenal fans wondering if Emery is the right man to lead their club. The Scottish Sun are reporting that former Gooner and current City assistant Mikel Arteta is the bookies favourite to replace Unai, if the North London giants decided to ditch the former PSG and Sevilla gaffer.

Patrick Veira, Brendan Rodgers, Nuno Espirito Santo and Max Allegri have also been mentioned as possible candidates if they Gunners’ hot-seat were to become vacant!

Personally, I still believe Emery deserves to get the rest of this season before a judgement is made regarding his future but if he were to be sacked before then I’d earmark current Ajax boss Erik ten Hag as age ideal man to come in and change things at The Emirates.

The forty-nine year old coach has been sensational since arriving in Amsterdam in the December of 2017. He currently boasts a winning percentage of 74.73% in ninety-one games.

Last season he guided his Ajax side to the Eredivisie title and a KNVB Cup.

The Dutch boss also watched on as his young squad shone in the Champions League. They were unbeaten during the group stage, drawing twice with Bayern Munich. Things got even better in the knock-out stages as they saw off holders Real Madrid by beating the La Liga giants 4-1 at the Bernabeu. The de Godenzonen would then beat Juventus complete with Cristiano Ronaldo in the quarter-finals before eventually losing to Tottenham Hotspur on away goals in the semi-final stage.

Ten Hag has recently stated that his side are hungry to grow and get even better:

“I think, two things, first is that last season was last season. We have to forget that because we live in the future, we live for now and we have to perform and this team is a different team.”

“We are building a new team and developing a new team. Now we have to step up and become better. Sometimes you fall down but you also have to step up again and be better, develop. That’s only possible when you play out of your philosophy. Attitude to be better every day.”

Via The Mirror

Ajax and Ten Hag won a lot of admirers because of their consistently good and entertaining football.

Youngsters like Matthijs de Ligt and Frenkie de Jong became household names and won huge moves on the back of Erik giving them time to shine in the first team.

Other talented stars like David Neres and Hakim Ziyech have remained in Amsterdam and are still shining brightly in Red and White. Neres was part of the Brazil squad that secured the Copa America title in the summer.

As well as having talented youngsters to get the best from, Ten Hag also has a core of experienced players to help ground the hunger talent. Dusan Tadic was superb last season as was Daley Blind, both were mid-card performers in the Premier League but showed their worth at Ajax last term. 

They may have lost De Jong and De Ligt in the summer but Ajax haven’t been phased with their absence. They are leading The Netherlands top flight and have recorded comprehensive victories over Valencia and Lille in UEFA’s elite Champions League competition.

In Emery, Arsenal may have played it a bit safe and gone for a man that’s kind of cut from the same cloth as former boss Arsene Wenger. They look too hesitant at times away from home and they struggle to overcome adversity when it arrives. I think most areas of the pitch have improved but they still look a tad fragile at the back.

I think it’s that lack of stepping away from Wenger’s tentative side that concerns Arsenal fans. They want to see their side remain strong at the back and really attack teams. They don’t get that enough under Emery,

Erik ten Hag seems to get the best out of his young squad. They are tough to beat and they have a keen eye for goals. Arsenal have a lot of good young talent and that squad could be ready made for the Dutchman, as long as they improve the backline. Ten Hag also likes to play an offensive 4-3-3 formation with an attacking central midfielder dictating things. His fullbacks provide width and that would suit the likes of Kieran Tierney and Hector Bellerin. The midfield don’t drop too deep and that could comfort Gooner supporters. That can also see the wide-men move in more centrally and that could get more from Nicholas Pepe and Pierre Emerick-Aubamyang

If Arsenal do change their manager, then they need to make a bold statement and bring in someone that can turn things around and I believe that man should be Erik ten Hag.

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