Unai Emery hosted his first Arsenal regular season press conference earlier today, and while the updates aren’t too terribly surprising it means he and the club are in for less-than-ideal circumstances heading into Sunday’s home match versus defending league champions Manchester City.
Emery, updating the current injury situations:
“We have Koscielny out with a long injury and then also Kolasinac has a long injury. Nacho Monreal began to train with the team [on Friday]. As well, Danny Welbeck has come in this week but on Sunday it will be early to start playing him.
Regarding Ainsley Maitland-Niles:
The other players are OK and we are working on the possibility to work with Ainsley, who has experience in this [left-back] position. We want to give him confidence. I am going to decide tomorrow [Saturday] on the first 11, but Ainsley is the player who started the last match against Lazio.”
On whether or not any players will leave before the European deadline day:
“We only have three players: Carl Jenkinson, David Ospina and Joel Campbell, with the possibility to leave. But the other players are with us and we are going to work in the Emirates the day before the match with all the players.”
Regarding Aaron Ramsey’s contract situation:
“That’s not my work. For me it’s very important he stays with us. His experience here in Arsenal and the Premier League is very important and will give us all the information and performances in his quality. Then, the contract is for speaking with the club and the players.”
Comparing his career to his Sunday counterpart, Pep Guardiola:
“I am 46 and he is 47. His career as a player is bigger than mine and his career as a coach is also bigger than mine. But we started at the same moment, our career as coaches. His coaches, with statistics and data, are better than me also. But I like to play more against him because it’s demanding for your preparation, to try to win against his teams.
When we were in Spain, for me, each match against Barcelona with Almeria and then with Valencia for four years, was very exciting and demanding. It’s for that reason that Sunday is the same for me here. A new experience, but with one work with a lot of ambition for me. I want to show and to give our players also this ambition.”