Unai Emery under scrutiny but Arsenal manager’s future may not depend on top four finish

Arsenal boss Unai Emery came under scrutiny after his first season in charge last time out as the Gunners slipped to a fifth place finish with three defeats in their final five games.

However, the Spaniard won’t necessarily lose his job if the same happens this season, with the decision of the board also depending on results in other competitions.

The Athletic report that the former Sevilla and PSG manager’s position will be reviewed on the results the club achieve this season, but success in cup competitions could cover up for failure in the Premier League.

It has also been claimed that although qualifying for the Champions League is of paramount importance, the trajectory of the team in May will play a big part in future plans.

The north London outfit have lost just once in all competitions so far this season, and sit third in the league table after eight games played.

Michael Owen believes that the club are now in a good position moving forward, partly due to the influx of young players at the Emirates.

“Good signs because you’ve almost got two XIs,” Owen told Premier League Productions.

“Kieran Tierney was blooded last game in the Europa League and looks good, coming back to fitness.

“There’s a lot of good young players. Times are looking good for Arsenal.

“Bournemouth started last season really well, they’ve started this season pretty well as well, so for Arsenal to win was not an easy game let’s say in the form that Bournemouth were in.”

Owen went on to suggest one possible worry for Emery and Arsenal, which involves the hefty £72million fee they paid for Nicholas Pepe in the summer.

He added: “I think that’s the only big worry I think for Arsenal at the moment.

“Things are going pretty well, in the league they are chugging along, in Europe they’re doing fine.

“But [Pepe] was a massive outlay, you’re expecting or almost wanting a guarantee of performance for that type of money.

“It hasn’t happened yet but we all saw him in France, he’s a terrific player.

“It might take him a little bit of time, let’s give him the benefit of the doubt at the minute.”

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