Unai Emery has been told that Arsenal must get back into the Champions League, or else they will miss out on ‘tens of millions of pounds’ in financial rewards.
After reaching the Champions League for 19 consecutive seasons under Arsene Wenger, Arsenal missed out on the competition for a second year in a row last season, resulting in the end of the Frenchman’s 22-year reign.
Emery was brought in to get Arsenal back into the top-four but despite a strong start to the season, they are currently 5th in the Premier League table.
“This is not where we want to be. We have to improve, step forward,” said the Gunners’ managing director Vinai Venkatesham, as quoted by the Sun.
“The most pressing thing is to get back in the Champions League. That’s where this club needs to be as an absolute minimum.
“Being in the Europa League has a material financial impact across the club. It’s tens of millions of pounds. The more years you spend out of the Champions League, the bigger the strain it puts on the business model.”
Meanwhile, Arsenal’s head of football Raul Sanllehi hinted that Danny Welbeck’s horrific ankle injury could force Emery to dip into the transfer market in January.
“Danny’s injury was something absolutely unplanned for and it alters our views about the transfer market,” said Sanllehi.
“I’m not saying it’s an automatic green light to go to the market, but it has made us consider things.”