Patrick Vieira has urged Arsenal fans to “get behind” under-pressure boss Unai Emery – after previously revealing his ambition to return to the Gunners as manager.
Beleaguered former Sevilla coach Emery is under increasing pressure after the struggling north Londoners were easily beaten by Leicester
Two wins from 10 in the league has seen the pressure mount on Emery’s position with “Emery Out” once again trending on Twitter in the immediate aftermath of that game.
Vieira, 43, won three Premier League titles — including in 2003-04 when he captained the ‘Invincibles’ team as they went unbeaten for an entire season — and three FA Cups during his playing spell in north London.
And the Frenchman, currently managing in Ligue 1 with Nice, has told Emirates chiefs to back Emery despite their miserable form.
“It’s true Arsenal are going through a tough spell,” Vieira said. “But I haven’t watched all their matches, so I can’t talk about their game.
“They have a coach who is qualified and who works well. When a club is having a difficult time, it’s important to be united. I think he has enough experience to get them through this difficult spell.
“We have to get behind him and give him time to change things. I am not sure a change of manager will fix the problems.”
Last month, Vieira admitted he would jump at the chance of one day returning to Arsenal as manager.
The French World Cup winner quit the Gunners to pursue a playing career in Italy before hanging up his boots following a brief spell with Manchester City in 2011.
Vieira began his coaching career at the Etihad and, after enjoying a maiden managerial spell with City-affiliated New York City, he is now boss of French top-flight outfit Nice.
In an interview with French outlet RMC , Vieira seemingly suggested that he would be open to managing Arsenal if current boss Emery was to leave the club.
When asked about managing his former club as well as the France national team, he said: “If it’s my dream to coach Arsenal or France? Yes, like any player, when we do this job we want to touch the very high level.
“But the very high level I can touch with Nice from the moment we give ourselves the means to succeed and from the moment the way which we work is quite consistent.
“But we do this job, and I do this job, to one day to be the coach of a team that participates in the Champions League.”