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Emmanuel Petit claims Arsenal chiefs lied when they publicly backed under pressure boss Unai Emery.
Arsenal legend Emmanuel Petit has accused his former club of playing ‘politics’ with their public statement of support for boss Unai Emery.
The club’s head of football Raul Sanllehi and managing director Vinai Venkatesham insisted they have no immediate plans to sack the Spaniard, despite a run of just two wins in their last 10 Premier League games.
However, Petit believes that Arsenal are only going through the usual motions seen by a club trying to navigate a difficult period.
“What the club came out and said about Emery’s job being safe is not true at all,” Petit told Paddy Power.
“Everyone knows this the typical official language clubs send out to the press and fans when things are not going well, when they sense tension.
“This is a political answer and most of the time when I hear officials or shareholders talk like this it’s proof for me that they’re already thinking about sacking the manager.
“It’s the opposite of what they’re saying that might be true.”
Arsenal are currently sixth in the Premier League and eight points off the top-four positions, but club chiefs are still confident Emery is the right manager to take the club forward.
However, they have warned the former Paris Saint-Germain and Sevilla manager that results will need to improve.
“We firmly believe Unai is the right man for the job,” Sanllehi and Venkatesham told staff at a meeting, report BBC Sport.
“We are as disappointed as everyone else with both our results and performances at this stage of the season.
“We share the frustration with our fans, Unai, players and all our staff as they are not at the level we want or expect. Things need to improve to meet our objectives for the season.
“We are all working intensively behind the scenes to turn things around and are confident we will.
“We never take our fantastic support for granted. We hope we can all stick together and get behind the team in this challenging period, as together we are stronger.”
Emery has come under criticism from some quarters for not having developed the team since Wenger’s departure but Petit has accused the 48-year-old of having actually turned the Gunners into an average team.
“Arsene Wenger built this club for 20 years and there was concern as generation after generation came and went,” added Petit.
“But now they look like an average team without any inspiration or creativity – and I don’t think that’s solely down to the players.
“In order to save his job he’ll need to be given until some time around Boxing Day. But he’ll need great results and a huge difference in the style of the team on the pitch. There needs to be anger on the pitch, spirit.”