Ray Parlour warns Unai Emery about avoiding ‘failure’ with Arsenal

Ray Parlour has warned Arsenal boss Unai Emery that anything below a top-four finish in the Premier League this season will be seen as a “failure”.

Having taken over at the start of last season, Emery guided the Gunners to fifth and the Europa League final in his first term and has instilled more of his ideas this season with signings such as Nicolas Pepe and Dani Ceballos.

However, Pepe and Arsenal have failed to make a real impact so far. The Ivory Coast international has scored once and assisted twice in the league to date, but he missed a great opportunity to hand his side the lead in their defeat to Sheffield United.

Speaking on talkSPORT, Parlour admitted that not much has changed since Emery took over from Arsene Wenger and insisted that fans and the club’s board will be expecting a lot more.



“No, it’s not better [than when Wenger was in charge], but it is a real opportunity,” the pundit said.

“After we started really well during the start of the season, people were going: “Oh we can challenge for the title”, and I said no chance!

“If they come fourth, it’s a great season. Champions League football is the most important thing for Arsenal now going forward.

“If they come fifth or sixth this year it has been a failure again. Because they went into the transfer market and I think everyone was quite excited about the signings.”

Arsenal face Vitoria in the Europa League on Thursday before entertaining Crystal Palace at the Emirates on Sunday.

Read more: Emery critics ‘need to remember’ what he’s done at Arsenal