Is Freddie Ljungberg the natural successor to Unai Emery. Let’s say straight away that I don’t think that appointment of Freddie Ljungberg was as a direct result of Unai Emery’s personal request.
— afcstuff (@afcstuff) June 14, 2019
It feels, as an outsider, that the Swede may have been promoted from another vantage point but let’s at least be grateful that Steve Bould is leaving his first team duties behind him.
Bould, you may recall was a defender but apparently he couldn’t impart any pearls of wisdom to the worst collection of defenders in Arsenal’s entire history, which collectively shipped an embarrassing 51 goals.
Bould was either powerless to exact changes under Unai Emery or he was incapable of doing so, either way, he had to go. I personally thought Pat Rice stayed in the assistants role too long because it’s hard to relate to a former player and his ideas from a bygone era.
Anyway, Bould has gone to ruin the academy, while Ljungberg has been promoted after a progressive season coaching the under 23’s. My main hope is that a fresh outlook and ideas will impact on the players and that Ljungberg can also provide a crucial link between Emery and the academy, thus assisting the youngsters progress to the first team.
That’s simply not the forgone conclusion that some fans think it will be. Emery is looking for some form of success next term and including youth may not serve him well. However, there are financial restrictions and one feels that the options available are limited, forcing him into a position where there is no alternative. So who knows them better than Freddie.
So, Ljungberg spices things up with his new role but beyond that, are Arsenal looking to the future by elevating Ljungberg. It’s early days of course, with Emery only approaching his second season but perhaps the Emirates board are trying to incorporate the former fan favourite by making him part of the management set up.
???????? | #AFC
Freddie Ljungberg aspires to be a senior manager and he’d particularly want to do that job at Arsenal. [@jamesbenge] ?
Thoughts on Ljungberg as our manager of the future, Gunners? pic.twitter.com/RZhYjbgYoo
— afcSource™ (@afcSource) June 14, 2019
Between 1998-2007, Ljungberg made 216 appearances scoring 46 goals. That aside, the supporters took him to their hearts with his dynamic attacking style and striking red hair. He was feisty, passionate and committed and if he shows half of these attributes from day one, Arsenal will be in better shape through his contribution almost immediately.
I’m told that as soon as Ljungberg was informed of his promotion he wanted to start work the same day. What a pity the players were on their summer break. We should be careful at the notion of Ljungberg taking charge further down the line because the managers graveyard is littered with the bones of former players who couldn’t make a go of it.
Not just good players but sensational, world class players such as Thierry Henry, Bobby Moore, Maradona, Alan Shearer and Lothar Matthaus all failed to make an impact. It will be interesting to see what happens when Sarri finally leaves Chelsea and if Frank Lampard takes his place.
If nothing else, it will serve as a reminder of how much work is required regardless of reputation in the premier league. In Ljungberg’s case, he can’t lose at the moment but a ball hasn’t been kicked and the results have yet to be recorded.
Freddie Ljungberg will be handed a prominent role within Arsenal’s first-team setup & is currently finalising parameters of the new position which will see him advise Unai Emery on youngsters, as the club look to improve the pathway between the academy & seniors. [@JamesOlley] pic.twitter.com/gEIchpSGpx
— afcstuff (@afcstuff) June 5, 2019
Success rubs off on everyone but the smell of failure is almost impossible to get rid of.in this respect Emery and Ljungberg need a cracker of a season with at least a top four and a bit of silverware.