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Unai Emery Targets Europa League Triumph After Top-four Disappointment

Arsenal boss, Unai Emery, has switched attention to winning the Europa League after it appears the club might fail to secure a top-four spot in the Premier League.


The London club were held 1-1 by visiting Brighton Hove &Albion on Sunday.

A win for the Gunners would have pushed the top-four fight till the final day of the season, but their result and Chelsea’s 3-0 victory over Watford ensured the blues pick one of the final two tickets to Europe’s elite club competition next season.

However, Arsenal could still qualify, but it would depend on if Tottenham, who are in fourth, lose their final game in the league by wide margin.

It is unlikely the Emery side will achieve the top-four, as they have inferior goal difference, should Spurs even lose on the final day.

It means Arsenal would join Manchester United, who also stuttered in the race for the top-four finish, following the draw against already relegated Huddersfield in the second-tier club competition.

The Spanish coach can still take Arsenal into the Champions League, if they can win the Europa League.

They travel to Valencia on Thursday for the second leg of their semi-final. The first leg at the Emirate Stadium ended 3-1 in favour of the English side.

“We had the idea to continue taking chances for the opportunity against Burnley next week, but today we drew,” Emery said.

“We know they are very organised and strong defensively, so the key was scoring the second goal. We tried to do that and they gave us some minutes to come back, and again we tried for the second goal and made chances, but their defence did very well and their goalkeeper made some big saves.

“I think we worked and tried but didn’t get the result for taking chances next week. Now our way is to be strong in our focus for Thursday.

“I think we can speak now about the different situations and issues in the season, but it’s better to focus for Thursday against Valencia – and we are going to do the analysis also in the Premier league, because it’s our first target and we didn’t take this position like we wanted.”

Emery won the Europa League with Spanish club, Sevilla, three time in a row.

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