How Mikel Arteta’s record at Arsenal compares with Unai Emery’s

Quick Reads
Composite image of Arsenal managers Mikel Arteta (left) and Unai Emery (right) during matches at the Emirates Stadium, in the Premier League in March 2022 and the Europa League in November 2019 respectively.

Mikel Arteta has now been Arsenal manager for two-and-a-half years – but how does he compare to Unai Emery, his predecessor at the Emirates?

Emery was named as Arsene Wenger’s successor in 2018 and his first season wasn’t too bad, finishing fifth in the Premier League and reaching the Europa League final. 

But they lost to Chelsea in that final, and the manager was sacked in November 2019 after a terrible start to his second season.

Arsenal then appointed Arteta, who made 150 appearances for the club during his playing career and then worked as Pep Guardiola’s assistant at Manchester City.

The 40-year-old won the FA Cup in his debut season but the Gunners finished eighth in the Premier League that season and failed to move up the table in 2020-21. 

Arteta looked set to secure Champions League qualification in 2021-22 but Tottenham ultimately pipped Arsenal to the last top-four spot. 

Since leaving England, Emery has rebuilt his reputation at Villarreal, helping them win the Europa League in 2021 and reach the Champions League semi-finals in 2021-22. 

“They have put together a group who are all going in the same direction, working together, showing respect,” he told The Athletic when asked about Arsenal’s current situation.

“I knew that whoever began after Wenger, it was difficult for people to understand the changes that had to be made.

“Arteta is doing a good job, continuing what I began. He has had that patience from the fans, the patience they did not have with me. But I understand that.”

We’ve taken a closer look at Arteta’s managerial record at Arsenal and compared it to Emery’s record at the Emirates.

Mikel Arteta

Played: 130
Won: 71
Drawn: 22
Lost: 37

Top appearance maker: Bukayo Saka (111)
Top goalscorer: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (38)

Premier League points: 163/285

Trophies won: 2 (FA Cup, Community Shield)

Goals for: 215
Goals against: 134
Clean sheets: 47

Points per game: 1.80
Win rate: 54.6%
Loss rate: 28.4%
Clean sheet rate: 36.1%

Goals per game: 1.65
Goals against per game: 1.03

Buykayo Saka listening to Mikel Arteta on the sidelines during Arsenal's match, North London, Emirates Stadium, 22 October 2021.

READ: Six players that Mikel Arteta has improved at Arsenal: Elneny, Saka…

Unai Emery

Played: 78
Won: 43
Drawn: 16
Lost: 19

Top appearance maker: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang & Lucas Torreira (67)
Top goalscorer: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (41)

Premier League points: 88/153

Trophies won: 0

Goals for: 152
Goals against: 100
Clean sheets: 23

Points per game: 1.85
Win rate: 55.1%
Loss rate: 24.3%
Clean sheet rate: 29.4%

Goals per game: 1.94
Goals against per game: 1.28

More Arsenal

Revisiting the Arsenal XI from Unai Emery’s final game in charge in 2019

Can you name every player to appear for Arsenal in the Invincibles season?

Arteta’s transfers in every window at Arsenal – & what he needs this time