Kylian Mbappe has defended Unai Emery over Paris Saint-Germain’s early Champions League exit, and credited the coach with making him more decisive on a personal level.
Mbappe joined PSG on loan from Monaco at the start of the 2017/18 season, so he had the chance to work with the new Arsenal head coach for a full campaign. He told Le10Sport about the impact Emery’s coaching had on him.
“Unai Emery taught me to be more decisive, to have that desire to score goals,” he said. “Defensively, I still have shortcomings, but it really made me progress. He’s a great coach: seven trophies in two years, it’s not nothing.”
Of course, the one trophy the 46-year-old couldn’t get his hands on in the French capital was the Champions League. Mbappe admitted the whole team had to take responsibility for their failure in that regard.
“Yes. He (Emery) carries the responsibility, but he is not the only person responsible,” Mbappe insisted. “We all played our part. If we think that a simple change in coach is going to solve all our problems…”
It’s good to hear the players standing up to defend their former coach. It would be easy to throw him under the bus for the sake of their own careers, or simply to avoid talking about him at all. Clearly that’s not what the team want to do.
Hopefully Emery can have an impact on Arsenal’s young players like he did with Mbappe. The likes of Eddie Nketiah and Reiss Nelson need help to progress into first-team players, and more established senior team members like Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Hector Bellerin could do with some guidance too.
As for the team’s results, never mind seven trophies, if Emery can lift one in his first season he’ll be on the right track.