Aston Villa have appointed Unai Emery as their new head coach.
The former Arsenal manager succeeds Steven Gerrard at Villa Park and departs Spanish club Villarreal, who he guided to the Champions League semi-finals last season and the Europa League title the previous year.
Emery, who has also managed Paris Saint-Germain and Sevilla, where he won three consecutive Europa League titles between 2013 and 2016, will take over from 1 November after Villa agreed to meet the LaLiga outfit’s £5.2m buy-out fee.
His first match in charge will therefore be a home fixture against Manchester United, with caretaker manager Aaron Danks expected to lead the side against Newcastle this weekend.
Under Danks, Villa thrashed Brentford 4-0 on Sunday in their first match since sacking Gerrard, who struggled to improve the side despite significant backing in the transfer market in the previous two windows.
Villa have moved swiftly to appoint Emery after being turned down by the former Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino and former Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel, following the decision to sack Gerrard just 11 games into the Premier League season,
Emery leaves Villarreal seventh in LaLiga and after a successful spell at the club. Emery’s Villarreal defeated Manchester United on penalties to win the Europa League final in 2021, before they knocked out Juventus and Bayern Munich on their way to reaching the Champions League semi-finals for the first time last season, only to be beaten by Liverpool.
Previously, Emery was sacked by Arsenal midway through his second season in charge following a poor run of form. He took the Gunners to the Europa League final in 2019, where they were beaten by Chelsea, but results deteriorated the following season after a late collapse and failure to qualify for the Champions League.
Emery turned down the chance to manage Newcastle last season following the club’s Saudi takeover.
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