Unai Emery's 'biggest change' is Arsenal atmosphere, says Nigel Winterburn
Last Updated: 14/03/19 11:30pm
Unai Emery has installed a new belief and atmosphere at Arsenal since arriving at the club, according to Nigel Winterburn.
The Spaniard led Arsenal to the quarter-finals of the Europa League courtesy of a 3-0 win against Rennes at the Emirates on Thursday night, becoming only the second team to overturn a 3-1 first-leg deficit in the Europa League since its inception in 2009.
After inflicting Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's first league defeat earlier in the week to cement fourth place in the Premier League, Emery has proven he has instilled a new-found confidence and belief at the club, according to Winterburn.
"At this moment in time, the atmosphere within the stadium (is biggest change)" Winterburn told The Debate. "Particularly last season with Arsene Wenger, it was toxic at times within the stadium, Arsenal supporters arguing with each other, and I think there's just a renewed energy with Unai Emery coming in.
"Different voice, different style of play, he's quite happy to bring people off after 45 minutes, I just feel there's more belief around the stadium and the atmosphere in some of the home games has been very, very strong.
"This is not Unai Emery's team; he's not bought in many players, bar one or two, and I'm looking forward to seeing if he gets another two or three transfer windows and have money to spend, and see where the team are from there."
Fellow guest Gus Poyet, who has served as a player and a manager in the Premier League, said the change in atmosphere from the stands would have an affect on the pitch, no matter what players say in public.
He added: "Sometimes we try to be strong as football players and say the fans don't influence us on the pitch, but then when it's happening week-in, week-out against the team - and it was - it's difficult.
"There's a bit of freedom, there's been many changes and it's something new, I've not seen an Arsenal team changing so many players from game to game, but the only thing we don't know is if he can pick his best 11.
"They can win the Europa League. They have a talisman coach, who has won it a few times."