'Top four and some trophies' - Holding outlines Arsenal's ambition in Emery's debut campaign

Comments()
Getty
The Gunners are hoping to see a first season under a new management team deliver Champions League qualification and major silverware

Arsenal’s ambition during Unai Emery’s first season as boss sees them chasing down “top four with some trophies”, says Rob Holding.

The Gunners slipped out of Champions League contention towards the end of Arsene Wenger’s iconic reign, with the Frenchman unable to deliver elite European competition in his last two seasons.

Emery has been charged with the task of forcing Arsenal back into that pack, while challenges for domestic silverware are always expected in north London – with the club having enjoyed considerable success in the FA Cup over recent years.

Holding believes the Gunners should have their eyes on every prize in 2018-19, with a 16-match unbeaten run keeping them in the hunt for Carabao Cup and Europa League glory while also taking aim at a lofty finish in the Premier League.

“We've had a great start, we want to conquer that top four and get ourselves back in there as soon as we can. That's the main aim,” the 23-year-old defender told Sky Sports.

“In the cup competitions we want to maintain our place in the Europa League and we're on a good run in the Carabao Cup and have a good game against Spurs coming up.

“We'll see if we can finish with some trophies. Top four with some trophies would be a very successful season.”

Confidence is building again around Arsenal, with Holding one of those to have benefited from a change in the dugout as Emery seeks to build on the foundations laid down by Wenger.

Unai Emery Arsene Wenger Arsenal

A man hoping to earn senior international recognition with England at some stage said of the differences between his bosses of past and present: “Wenger was very good for me as a manager and what he did for me. He encouraged me to play out from the back, showed me how to and gave me confidence.

“The main difference is how we're defending when we're attacking. When we're up the other end of the pitch, how we are organised and prepared for a counter. That has been the biggest difference.

“We're really focusing on video work, moving as little as five yards in some positions which makes all the difference when getting to the ball.

Article continues below

“When we were playing we would be stood there and no one would be talking to each other, whereas now there is much more communication.

“We seem a bit more organised and a bit more together at the back.”

Arsenal, who have conceded more than one goal in the same game just once in their last 12 outings, will return to domestic action on Sunday with a trip to Bournemouth.

Close