Arsenal identified former Tottenham manager as an ideal replacement for Unai Emery

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Arsenal’s board is considering making an offer for Mauricio Pochettino following their decision to fire Unai Emery.

The Spaniard was given his marching orders on Friday morning, less than 24 hours after a demoralising Europa League defeat versus Eintracht Frankfurt, played out in front of a half-empty Emirates Stadium.

Unai Emery replaced Arsene Wenger 18 months ago but, after showing signs of initial promise, the team’s form and the quality of its plays deteriorated rapidly, culminating in a run of just one win in the last nine games.

The 48-year-old tactician arrived for training on Friday morning as usual but was informed of the decision to relieve him of his duties by technical director Edu and managing director Vinai Venkatesham.

Freddie Ljungberg has been placed in temporary charge and will pick the team for Sunday’s Premier League match versus Norwich, but the search for Unai Emery’s replacement has already begun in earnest.

Leicester’s Brendan Rodgers and Wolves’ manager Nuno Espirito Santo are said to be among the leading candidates, while Max Allegri, who has been out of work since leaving Juventus at the end of last campaign, and Napoli’s experienced former Chelsea coach Carlo Ancelotti are also under consideration.

According to The Athletic, meanwhile, the Arsenal board have discussed the viability of Mauricio Pochettino, who was fired by Tottenham last week after five highly successful years in the white half of north London.

The Argentine said last year he would instead return to work on his farm in his homeland, rather than one day to defect to Arsenal, but the dramatic and sudden nature of his dismissal could tempt him to change his mind.

Mauricio Pochettino and his staff still live in London and are available to work, while his track record in developing young players would appeal to the Arsenal board, who have actively talked up the crop of teenagers who have risen through their academy.