Is Emery prepared for Pep Guardiola?

By Vincent Kejitan: Thursday, August 9th 2018 at 13:07 GMT +3 | Football
Unai Emery and Pep Guardiola. [Courtesy]

Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany lifted the English Premier League trophy back in May and it now looks like an eternity ago.

Football lovers have not had much to complain about as the Russia 2018 World Cup offered a month of enthralling action.?

However, after a 10-week break, the EPL is here with us again.

Several teams strengthened in the summer and managers have been up and about to ensure their squads are up to par.

The most notable absentee in the league’s elite list of managers this year will be Arsenal’s long-serving manager Arsene Wenger who was replaced by former PSG boss Unai Emery.

Get the latest sports news updates. Subscribe to our SMS sports service by texting 'SPORTS' to 22840.

Not only is Emery a breath of fresh air but also a shrewd tactician, whose CV boasts of a number of Europa league titles and a couple of decent finishes in the Spanish La Liga and the French Ligue 1.

In his first match, Emery will come face to face with Pep Guardiola, one of the most decorated managers in the history of football, and the two will roll back the years to their days in Spain.

When Emery was at the helm in Valencia, he guided the side to a number of top-three finishes despite selling stars like David Villa, David Silva, Juan Mata and Bernat to top European sides.

However, during his 10 matches against Pep, Emery could only manage four draws, losing the other six.

This might worry Arsenal fans who are optimistic after the exit of Wenger but if the mettle they have shown during their preseason matches is anything to go by, then his first match on English soil against Pep promises to be a cracker.

Having missed out on the Champions League, Arsenal will play in the Europa league but boy aren’t they in safe hands!

Emery's Europa League prowess is almost unrivalled, with his three victories equalled only by Giovanni Trapattoni with Inter Milan and Juventus.

Pep, on the other hand, will be expected to deliver the coveted UCL title to the blue side of Manchester, having signed Riyadh Mahrez from Leicester.

Man city is almost the ideal squad with a mix of experience (Silva, Kompany, Fernandinho) and youngsters such as Gabriel Jesus and lightning-quick Leroy Sane, not to forget the lethal duo of Kevin De Bruyne and Kun Aguero.

In my opinion, only Liverpool look like genuine title contenders on paper but the EPL always has its fair share of surprises.