Goal: Pressure could increase significantly on the Gunners manager if more points are dropped this weekend, according to a club legend
Arsenal supporters are beginning to lose patience with Unai Emery after a mediocre start to the 2019-20 season, according to Charlie Nicholas, who sees danger signs ahead of a trip to Leicester on Saturday.
The Gunners have slipped to fifth in the Premier League after 11 fixtures, already six points adrift of the Champions League places.
A 1-1 draw away to Vitoria in the Europa League on Wednesday extended Arsenal’s winless run to four matches, with a vital domestic clash up next before the international break.
Emery’s men must travel to the King Power Stadium this weekend to face a Leicester side which has won seven of their last eight matches across all competitions.
The Foxes have risen to third in the Premier League table and are now being tipped to finish in the top four come next May, most likely at the expense of Arsenal.
Nicholas, who played for the Gunners between 1983 and 1988, believes the “fans are starting to turn against Emery”, who could come under “serious scrutiny” if he suffers another setback at Leicester.
“He [Emery] is certainly under scrutiny,” Nicholas told Sky Sports. “I’m not calling for his head and the board won’t be calling for his head, but this isn’t Manchester United replacing Sir Alex Ferguson, it’s not at that level.
“This is Arsenal trying to find a new identity. Is this different to what Wenger got the sack for? No, it’s worse defensively.
“I think the fans are starting to turn. They are asking the same thing as I am: where is the improvement and what is the difference [to Wenger]? What is Arsenal’s personality?
“So yes, take it game by game, but if they are to lose to Leicester, the manager will come under serious, serious scrutiny.”
Despite adding David Luiz and Kieran Tierney to their defensive ranks over the summer, Arsenal have already conceded 15 Premier League goals this term, with familiar issues at the back persisting.
In stark contrast, Leicester have the joint best defensive record in the division and have also managed to score 11 more goals than Emery’s struggling outfit.
Nicholas predicts Arsenal could be “blown away” by Brendan Rodgers’ free-flowing Foxes, as he added: “It’s seriously worrying. They’ve got Leicester on Saturday evening and at the moment it looks like they could blow them away.
“Arsenal fans have travelled and watched another basic performance. I like the manager a lot but I said the same with Arsene Wenger: things have to change. He [Emery] has to be stronger and sort these problems out.
“Arsenal have lost the urgency to go and win football matches. The defensive frailties have been there for 18 months, if not longer, and things need to get sorted now. Arsenal fans are starting to get pretty fed up.”
Source: Published by Goal