New Arsenal manager, Unai Emery has been given the worst possible welcome to England as the Gunners were handed a tough away clash with reigning champions, Manchester City on the Premier League’s opening day on August 11.
In the 2018/19 EPL fixtures released early Thursday, the Spanish coach who recently replaced former manager, Arsene Wenger after a 22- year stint was handed a tantalising clash with a City side which ruled the English game, breaking records to win their third Premier league in style last season.
The significance of the clash is not lost on analysts who see the game as Emery’s baptism of fire, especially considering that his predecessor, Wenger found the City mountain too high to surmount on his last season in charge.
City had literally destroyed the Gunners in back to back meetings last season, first beating them to the Carabao Cup, and going on to complete the humiliation a few days later in the league. This had been after they had hammered the north London side in a Premier League meeting early in the season.
Gunners’ fans all over the world are therefore going to place much premium on the game as its outcome directly has a bearing on what becomes of his tenure at the Emirates.
After his opening day fireworks, the former PSG manager will then rally his Arsenal troops for an away battle to Chelsea. The Gunners had a good run against one of their biggest rivals, at least, towards the end of the Wenger reign. Emery will be expected to sustain that dominance.
Then, the Spaniard will face another tough start to the month of December(Dec.1, precisely) with a home north London derby against Tottenham Hotspurs who will be expected to move into their new stadium in September.
Emery will then lead the Gunners to Old Trafford the following weekend to clash with Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United.