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Name Emmanuel Petit
Spelling Emmanuel Laurent Petit
Gender Male
Born 1970 09 22
Birthplace Dieppe
Nationality France
Ethnic French
Height 1,85 m
Job Arsenal FC Footballer
  French Footballer
  French Midfielder
Desc A converted defensive midfielder who formed a crucial partnership with Patrick Vieira. Only spent three years in north London but helped Arsenal to win the double in 1997/98

Affiliation

Org French National Team
Club as Player Chelsea FC
  Barcelona FC
  Arsenal FC
  As Monaco
  As Monaco U19

Relationship

Wife Agathe de la Fontaine

Notes

Agathe de la Fontaine She is french actress. She and Emmanuel Petit in 2000
1990 08 15
Emmanuel Petit had his debut for French National Team
1998 07 12
World Cup 1998 final where France defeat Brazil 3-0. Zinedine Zidane score 2 goals with assist from Emmanuel Petit and Youri Djorkaeff. also final goal came from Emmanuel Petit with assist by Patrick Vieira

1999 05 10 Retrieve

[Arsenal mid-fielder Emmanuel Petit sounding like a right eejit] I feel like my personality has become more substantial and, from my misfortune, I have taken away positive things. I have done my own psychoanalysis - like the Tibetans I have learned to understand myself, even if you never fully can

2005 01 21
Former France midfielder Emmanuel Petit announce his retirement from football after failing to recover from knee surgery. The 34-year-old, who scored in France’s 1998 Word Cup final triumph over Brazil played over 190 games in England for Arsenal and Chelsea and stood out with a flowing blonde ponytail

2005 01 21 Retrieve

I was spared by injuries for most of my career but unfortunately I have had to undergo three operations within a year. I have had contact with French clubs like Olympique Lyon and Girondins Bordeaux but I didn’t feel like going there. What I wanted was to play again in the Premier League, which is the place I belonged to. … Overall I’m very proud of my career. My only regret is having to end my career because of an injury, like Marco van Basten or Glenn Hoddle

2008 06 12 Retrieve

On my days off I discovered the parallel world of Parisian nights – private soirees, swapping clubs. They often went on in incredibly luxurious apartments whose owners I didn’t even know – but everyone recognised me

[At the Sopwell House hotel in St Albans, Herts, close to Arsenal’s training ground, Petit found time to indulge in a spot of relaxation in the games room there] This pretty girl came regularly. We had a relationship one day in the snooker room. The next morning, the director and his staff welcomed me with applause. He said the room had cameras but reassured me that, as an Arsenal fan, he wouldn’t make the slightest use of it

[Of his time being courted by the high rollers from affluent Arab families a trips to their yachts] They had only top models on board and cocaine everywhere. I didn’t take any. The wealthy owners had a great time humiliating the young women in the worst of ways

2013 11 05 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit on Paul Scholes] At Arsenal, me and Patrick Vieira didn’t want to face Scholes. We would avoid him

2015 11 28 Retrieve

[on Roy Keane] Both physically and tactically a giant of the game

2016 02 03 Retrieve

[On Dennis Bergkamp] A genius and a pleasure to play with because he would always find space in which to receive the ball

2016 02 17 Retrieve

[Quotes on Lilians Thuram] He wasn’t the best player running with the ball, but for me he was certainly the best defender; you couldn’t pass him, it was impossible, he was a wall. Even if you came with two players and tried to pass him it was impossible, because he was very intelligent in reading the game. He was very powerful, very quick, and very very tough. [. . .] We could see that on the pitch, every time the opponent went into his area, they were a little frightened to be close to him because he was so tough

2017 03 08 Retrieve

[Quotes on John Terry] I think John Terry was, and still is, Chelsea blood, coming from the Academy. It is quite remarkable, the career he has had as captain, everything he has achieved. [. . .] We mustn’t forget what he has done over the last 12 years; he is a great player, a great leader, always competitive, very hard to play against

2019 05 24 Retrieve

[Sylvinho is not just about brawn; when put up in front of the press he has spoken well about tactical questions, no doubt catching the eye of Juninho, who was ultimately responsible for his appointment. Former Arsenal team-mate Emmanuel Petit says this acumen has long been evident in the South American] He was someone with intuitive intelligence who knew how to respond to tactical problems on the field. He had a mentality that was incredible, always getting up when it was hardest, always having the right word. He’s broken the tradition of the Lyon, and that’s not going to please everyone at the heart of the club, but OK…He was a guy who would always question the importance of each drill at training. He had Guardiola and Arsene Wenger as coaches. He’s been brought up in the schools that practise the play that Lyon want

2019 08 05 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says Thierry Henry did not take too kindly to being told that he need to be more humble] Thierry was a tremendous player. Everyone knows what he has done on the pitch. Now he wants to be a manager and his first job at Monaco did not go well – I think he is still a player in his mind. You have to change the mentality – you can’t keep the player’s mindset if you want to be a manager. The way you talk to players and control training sessions is very important. Even if it’s your first job, footballers will test you constantly. As a player, Thierry was terrific and I hope he achieves the same as a manager. But I remember saying something to him at ArsenaI. I told him, ‘Every time you score a goal, you should be more humble and try to have a connection with the fans, rather than living in your own world’. He didn’t like it.

[Petit has also suggested that Thierry Henry’s personality meant that he was never as well received by the French public as he was by Arsenal supporters] He enjoyed huge recognition in England, but in France he doesn’t have the same image, especially after what happened with Ireland – the handball and then ‘comforting’ the Irish players after the final whistle

2019 08 15 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says Chelsea won’t regret David Luiz sale] The fact that David Luiz left the club the way he did tells me that Lampard told him he was not going to feature regularly in his team. Luiz is 32 years old, and Lampard knows what he’s like as a player and was fine with showing him the door – I don’t think that’s the issue here

For me, it should have been done earlier and that’s the problem. I’m not very happy seeing players moving clubs when the competitions are starting, it just causes trouble. But for me, Lampard sent a clear message to Luiz by showing him the door, that he is not his priority, so I doubt he regrets his decision

2019 08 16 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says New Chelsea boss Frank Lampard already finds himself in must-win territory] They have to win it, it’s so important for the players and their confidence but also for Lampard’s confidence too. After Manchester United I believe the players were thinking about what a big loss Eden Hazard is, and how they would compete without replacing him. But after the Super Cup and a win against Leicester can turn that confidence around, they have a quality team with quality players and Lampard is using youth too which is good to see.

Jorginho had by far his best game in a Chelsea shirt since he arrived and to do well those performances need to be kept up. Failure to beat Leicester will mean people will start asking questions of Lampard, it will put much more pressure on him and on the players and questions will be on the table about whether Lampard is right for the job. That in turn puts more stress in the dressing room and more trouble for the manager. The pressure will be so huge on their shoulders if they don’t get the result, so they have to start well and win convincingly.

It’ll buy them time to work on the team and bring back confidence, but after the Liverpool game I would say they have good reason to believe they will win. If they keep playing like that, they will games and that’s a fact. For me, they have the players to do well in the Premier League this season, they will be one of the teams to beat – though I can’t say the same for the Champions League. Lampard received some criticism from Jose Mourinho when they played Chelsea, but it was his job to comment and be honest about what he felt. He will realise that he will get a lot of opinions now and people telling you what you should and shouldn’t do, people pointing in your face and telling you that you are wrong, but it’s the same for all big clubs. You will face criticism as Chelsea manager

2019 08 31 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says David Luiz is like Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde] David Luiz is like Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, like The Hulk and Bruce Banner. He can do great things in terms of leadership and aggression, spirit and mentality. We all know his warrior qualities, but we also know that he be off his game for many reasons, and that he takes many risks when it comes to positioning and possession. You don’t know what to expect of him at any given time. He was brought in during the closing stages of the transfer window so he’s a good bargain, but the reality is that if he plays 40 games in a season, he’ll make many individual mistakes

I thought Nicolas Pepe was the best Arsenal player on the pitch [against Liverpool]. He was the only one who looked like he was a danger to the Liverpool defence. Every time he got the ball in space, he was a real threat. He also made a good impression against Burnley the previous week, so I was surprised that Unai Emery didn’t start him alongside Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. I didn’t really understand Emery’s tactics – the philosophy or the approach – at Anfield. [Pepe] looks skinny and fragile but he’s very toned and very fast – and of course superb with the ball at his feet. He speaks the same football language as Lacazette and Aubameyang in terms of movement and passing. It’s just a bit frustrating that Arsenal haven’t played slightly more offensively so far. It was only in the last 20 minutes of the Liverpool match that Emery made the decision to put three up front – and we saw straight away that the face of the team changed. I hope the manager will have the guts to do what Jurgen Klopp does with his front three – Emery needs to do the same with Arsenal

2019 09 01 Retrieve

[All out attack! Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette and Nicolas Pepe can pile pain on Spurs] I hope the manager will have the guts to do what Jurgen Klopp does with his front three. Emery needs to do the same with Arsenal. Pepe will show the Premier League what he’s made of. He looks skinny and fragile but he’s very toned and very fast – and, of course, superb with the ball at his feet. He speaks the same football language as Lacazette and Aubameyang in terms of movement and passing. It’s just a bit frustrating that Arsenal haven’t played slightly more offensively so far. It was only in the last 20 minutes of the Liverpool match that Emery made the decision to put three up front – and we saw straight away that the face of the team changed

2019 09 30 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit urges Unai Emery to stop tinkering with his Arsenal side and find a settled starting XI] What Unai Emery wants to create is a team. A collective unit. Not just the first 11 but the whole group. This is why he’s constantly rotating his side and including young players. I like this idea, but it’s difficult for players to operate in a system like this. He changes so often – but you need to be playing regularly in order to adapt like this. His demands from the players are huge. But if they show the character they’ve shown recently, they have the potential to do something. Belief comes with results, but results come from what you bring to the pitch. That doesn’t come easily. You can’t do it one week and then sleep for two weeks

Arsenal have reacted well after the points they dropped against Watford. In a very difficult game for them against Aston Villa, having gone down to 10 men and needing to chase back from being down on the scoresheet, they showed character. There are some very positive things to be seen there, especially from the younger players. The dynamic seems to be good. But you can’t be 100% sure of that, because you never know: they could easily fall down against Man United on Monday.

You just don’t know what to expect from this fixture. Arsenal have been thrashed by Liverpool, though Man United aren’t on that level. That said, you’d think Arsenal have a very good opportunity to win at Old Trafford. They need a win away from home, as they’ve been dropping points so easily on the road. This match is very important for them, and it’s a good time to be playing Man United

2019 10 23 Retrieve

Can you imagine Patrick Vieira on the pitch on Monday night? He would have been shouting at his team-mates, asking them: ‘What the fck are you doing?’ I don’t see that with Granit Xhaka. I do with Matteo Guendouzi – he’s one of the few who shows he wants to win every game. He’s got a lion’s heart. Guendouzi is relied upon a lot by Unai Emery, and that’s because he’s showing anger on the pitch. He hates to lose games, you can see that he’s ready to fight for every single ball. He plays to his strengths and he does that well. That’s more than you can say for some of the other midfielders. Can anyone tell me what is Xhaka’s best quality? I don’t know why he has been made captain. The leadership is absent

Unai Emery said last week that Mesut Ozil was ready to play. Yet he didn’t even make the bench. That left Arsenal FC without any quality to bring on. The players Emery picked to start in Sheffield – honestly, come on! Were there really no other options? What about Dani Ceballos? He’s one of the few Arsenal players who can create something with his passing. I don’t want to focus on Granit Xhaka all the time but, well, show me something else!

Regarding Ozil, I don’t think the club are being completely honest. Ozil seems to be ready to play, he has been training for weeks – if he’s not fit now, when is he going to be fit? There’s a problem somewhere. Maybe it’s a mental issue or maybe Emery simply doesn’t like him or doesn’t trust him

I can understand why many Arsenal supporters are losing patience with Unai Emery. As a manager he has a bad record away from home - not just with Arsenal, but also while he was in Spain. Arsenal showed no character and it p
sses me off because it has been the case so many times away from home. The starting XI he picked against Sheffield United was strange. It’s difficult after an international break when you have to play teams that don’t have as many players involved in the international fixtures

But you know what to expect when you go to Bramall Lane - you know the qualities of the Sheffield United team. They fight, especially in front of their home crowd, and they get balls into the box and put pressure on at set pieces. That’s what they did against Liverpool and Chelsea.

But more importantly they didn’t show any technical quality on the pitch. They gave away so many simple balls and had no inspiration, imagination or creativity. They looked so heavy. This isn’t Arsenal - you need to take the ball and show what you’ve got. But I haven’t seen that in years. Nothing has changed since Arsene Wenger left

Unai Emery wants to build from the back. Like against Watford, when they were leading 2-0 before making a stupid mistake because they tried to follow Emery’s instructions. Some of those Arsenal defenders don’t have the technical quality to do that. Or if they do, they don’t have the character to do it. Teams like City can do that because their players aren’t scared. But most of those Arsenal players, when they feel someone at their back, whoa, it’s a problem

2019 10 24 Retrieve

To be fair to Unai Emery, it’s a good thing that he’s picking a lot of young players, including players grown at the club. Gabriel Martinelli has caught my eye, as has Joe Willock. And, of course, Kieran Tierney - I can’t wait to actually see him playing, it’s time - Arsenal need something else in defence.

I’m happy to see these players getting a chance. Some of them have quality, though they need to improve. For that, they need help from older players, who don’t seem to be showing the way to these youngsters. These experienced heads must show the responsibility and personality needed to succeed as an example for their younger team-mates

2019 10 27 Retrieve

[Xhaka tells Arsenal fans to ‘fck off’ after being substituted as he storms off pitch]</b> Can you imagine Patrick Vieira on the pitch on Monday night? He would have been shouting at his team-mates, asking them: ‘What the fck are you doing?’. I don’t see that with Xhaka. I do with Guendouzi - he’s one of the few who shows he wants to win every game. He’s got a lion’s heart. Guendouzi is relied upon a lot by [Unai] Emery, and that’s because he’s showing anger on the pitch. He hates to lose games, you can see that he’s ready to fight for every single ball. He plays to his strengths and he does that well. That’s more than you can say for some of the other midfielders. Can anyone tell me what is Xhaka’s best quality? I don’t know why he has been made captain. The leadership is absent

2019 10 29 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka should be stripped of the captaincy, shut his mouth and work hard to win back respect] I have never seen something like what happened with Granit Xhaka before. For me, he can’t be the Arsenal captain any longer. It’s impossible. What he did was unacceptable. What he did on the pitch is one thing, I’ve made it clear that I don’t know what he adds to the team. But what Xhaka did as he left the pitch is totally different. You can’t do that – it’s like betrayal in England

If I were to talk to Xhaka, I would say: ‘You are doing the most exciting job in the world, and you have to make sacrifices. You must understand that, when you play for a big club like Arsenal, and are captain on top of that, you must be an example on and off the pitch. Right now, you’re not. So, lay down. Don’t answer any questions that might be a problem – just shut your mouth, work, and try to get back the fans’ and players’ confidence. This is the toughest game you will have to play since becoming a player

I played with guys like Tony Adams and Patrick Vieira – real leaders, big captains – and they showed the personality and character of what it means to be Arsenal captain, whatever happened on the pitch. Adams and Vieira always respected the fans – I don’t think Xhaka understands what it means to be a supporter in England. He doesn’t know the love those people have for the club and the players, they always support you. I appreciate my time in England because of that. I have witnessed fans booing players before, of course, but not like this. The anger was something else. It’s clear, they don’t want Xhaka to play for Arsenal anymore.

It’s very difficult for the Arsenal fans to forgive Xhaka. They don’t want him to play for their club anymore. To pass over what happened would be really difficult for Unai Emery. Is he going to have the guts to keep Xhaka as captain? I’m not sure. But, more importantly, are the club going to do something about what happened? I think they have to, as a message to the fans and the players. Whatever happens on the pitch, the fans have the right to boo and show they are unhappy, the same way they have the right to applaud when you score and win games. It’s normal. This is an absolute basic for life as a football player; it’s the same in the street, even if someone comes up to you and says you’re sh*t, you have to keep your nerve.

I know it’s difficult, especially with the pressure Xhaka has been under for the last few weeks. He’s been criticised by the fans and the media – by me, too, as a player, rather than as a person – but this is what it means to be captain of a big club. Now, Xhaka has to be very solid in his mind. He needs to realise that what happened on Sunday was a mistake. I’m pretty sure he’s going to come up with an excuse, though

2019 11 13 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit has expressed his belief that it is time for Unai Emery to leave Arsenal] The club needs a great leader now. Someone who can bring back the passion, someone respected by the players, someone who can fill the team with energy and the winning mentality. Steven Gerrard, for example, is like this. I want to see passion, emotion. Someone who, when he takes your hand, you can feel the electricity. I want someone who can bring that to the Arsenal dressing room, because they need to wake up

I believe it’s time for Unai Emery to leave Arsenal. The results are not good at all. I don’t recognise this team anymore and I don’t recognise this club anymore. Arsene Wenger built this club for 20 years and there was concern as generation after generation came and went. But now they look like an average team without any inspiration or creativity – and I don’t think that’s solely down to the players. My opinion is that most of the players have given up on Emery, so it’s time for him to go

[Petit feels a club legend would be a better fit for the role] People may laugh at me but I wouldn’t mind seeing a former player on the bench. Is there a former Arsenal great you can call, like Thierry Henry or Patrick Vieira? Pick one: there are so many. You even have Freddie Ljungberg already in the dugout. Patrick has done a very good job over two years at Nice, though you don’t know what’s going to happen at that club as they’ve just been bought out by Ineos and Jim Ratcliffe. So, we’ll need to wait a few months to see what’s going on there

[Petit concluded by throwing one more high-profile name into the mix] I’m also watching closely what’s happening at Napoli with Carlo Ancelotti. I think he would be a very good manager for Arsenal

2019 11 29 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says Arsenal should be looking to appoint Patrick Vieira as Unai Emery’s successor] We need a new manager to come in and change the mentality of the dressing room. Bring the team spirit with anger and what it means to wear the Arsenal shirt. To put the players on the pitch with confidence. Because things can change. I’m very impressed with what Nuno is doing at Wolves. Their progression has been perfect. I really like him as a manager, he has the right mentality for the club, and the results – after a slow start to the season – have been excellent at Wolves.

As for Mikel Arteta, there’s a reason why Pep Guardiola asked him to join at Manchester City, and that’s a very, very good sign. I really respect Guardiola’s judgement. To me, it says that Arteta definitely has the personality to be Arsenal manager. They are amongst the favourites to get the job, and they’d both be a good choice, but I would prefer to see Patrick Vieira on the bench.

He’s been managing for several years now and what he’s doing with the young players at Nice is impressive. On top of that, we need to get the Arsenal brand back – in terms of playing style and club spirit. Arsenal isn’t the same any more, I don’t recognise this club, we are losing it. I think some people will regret Arsene Wenger leaving, but Patrick can give us our identity back

2019 12 01 Retrieve

[Former Barcelona midfielder Emmanuel Petit has accused Neymar of disrespecting Paris Saint-Germain and their fans] When I played with [Zinedine] Zidane or [Youri] Djorkaeff, I knew they were able to decide a game on their own, so we accepted their defensive neglect. We accepted it and did our job because we knew they could win with a flash of genius. This is not the case, at all, with Neymar. This guy plays for him, and only for him. Put yourself in the place of the boys in the place of the PSG dressing room, who live for months with the whims of this guy who sh*ts on the club and their supporters; he has no respect

2019 12 15 Retrieve

[Arsenal legend Emmanuel Petit says that the club should not delay when it comes to appointing Carlo Ancelotti as their next manager] Ancelotti would be, right now, the perfect answer for Arsenal. It’s very rare to see a top manager like him getting fired in the middle of the season. It’s a coincidence and sometimes destiny tries to show you the way to go and you have to be open to it. He is one of the top managers in the world, he’s available and he’s on the market. I know he is in talks with Everton as well, but I’m pretty sure, if Arsenal do as good a job, he’d be more than happy to be the manager of Arsenal.

In the meantime, the question I ask myself is: ‘What kind of manager would be happy to take Arsenal’s situation right now?’ The situation has got worse and worse, season after season, so you need a really top manager to handle the situation right now. And, for the moment, the only one on the market and available is Ancelotti. Everywhere he went, Ancelotti had success, except with Napoli.

He is respected so much by the players for all of his experience and all of his years in the game. At Chelsea, in Italy, in France even with Paris Saint-Germain, he left great memories for the players. He improved a lot of them and won many trophies. He has so much experience. Ancelotti has everything required to be a top manager and if you listen to all of his former players, any of them, it’s kind of the same as Arsene Wenger. Most players will tell you good things and it’s the same with Ancelotti.

[Petit would put any plans to approach Patrick Vieira on the backburner for now] Patrick was my No.1 choice and I did really think that. But now Ancelotti is on the market and in the meantime, Patrick needs to improve more as a manager. He is still a young manager, what he is doing, step by step, is a good thing, the right thing, but he needs to improve more and more. Experience, the relationship with the players in the dressing room, it’s quite difficult sometimes with the new generation. He needs to get more experience

2020 02 08 Retrieve

[Petit not convinced Man City would be right for Barcelona superstar] Messi is not Cristiano Ronaldo. Physically he’s not the same machine. Ronaldo is a monster, but at 32 Messi has only one or two more years playing at the highest level. Even playing alongside great players at Barca, he won’t have the same pace or the dribbling ability. I’m sure he knows the end is not far away

Honestly, I don’t think he’s suited to the intensity of England. He doesn’t like being closed down and being fought – in Spain he’s protected. It would be a pleasure for English fans to see him there but I don’t see why a club like Man City, for example, would move for Messi at 32 or 33. If City wanted to buy him, they should have tried to do it a couple of years ago

Messi has won so many trophies and when I look back on Barca’s team from 10 years ago it’s clear now the club was at its peak. Those players wrote their own legends in that period. It’s normal that after you reach that level you realise there’s nothing else above it, and the only way is down. You can’t stay at the top forever. If you look at the players they’ve bought since then, you can see they haven’t had the financial might to compete against the biggest powers in the transfer market. They’re one of the biggest clubs but financially they’ve been a bit of a nightmare recently. Now they have to sell before they buy and these days if they want to bring in the world’s best players it costs them €80m or more

2020 02 08b Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says Arteta finding the cure for ‘sick’ Arsenal] When Mikel Arteta took over at Arsenal, the team was sick. Sick on the pitch and in the dressing room. They were losing shape and blindly going nowhere. They were weak. Now, after several weeks of the Arteta regime I’ve seen different things happening in terms of intensity, togetherness and work rate off the ball. The mentality is different and some players are getting back to form, like Granit Xhaka. I’m very pleased with how he has played and the mentality he has shown

Mesut Ozil has looked better on occasion and I’m happy with what I see from Lucas Torreira. The players seem to be getting the message from Arteta and I think it’s clear what he wants from them on and off the pitch in terms of discipline and commitment. It looks like they’re following the rules he sets out on the training pitch.

They haven’t been winning as many games as they’d like but they also haven’t been losing. More goals are needed if they want to win, which is the major problem. The first priority when Arteta took over was to stop the team conceding stupid goals, and he has done that. But in the meantime they’re suffering a bit up front – I think if they keep playing like this that, sooner or later, they’re going to win games

2020 03 20 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says Philippe Coutinho will be regretting his decision to leave Liverpool for Barcelona] If I was Philippe Coutinho, every morning I would wake up and think to myself, ‘Why, why, did I sign in Spain?’ And do you know why I say this? Because, I can remember the time when I’d wake up, when I was at Barcelona, when I left Arsenal, and I was thinking the same way, ‘Why did I leave? Why did I leave? Why did I leave?’ To be honest with you I am sure Coutinho has been asking himself the same question for a while now. He left for Bayern Munich, he does sometimes play well but he’s not really a first-team player

I’m pretty sure it would work out for him [returning to England]. He fits perfectly with the Premier League. He’s got the vision, the technique, the speed, he can strike, he has the creativity. We all know what he is capable of. I was a big fan of his when he was at Liverpool. I would be very, very happy to see him back in the Premier League. He won’t go back to Liverpool. When I was at Barcelona, they wanted me back at Arsenal, and it was tempting – I was close to returning to Arsenal. But at the end of the day, I was thinking ‘Emmanuel, you need to be honest with yourself. If you left a year ago it was for a reason’. If Coutinho is honest with himself, since he left Liverpool they have won the Champions League and they’re on the way to winning the Premier League. Liverpool haven’t needed him, so why would he go back to Liverpool?

2020 03 25 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit has admitted that he holds the current Liverpool squad in higher esteem than Arsenal’s ‘Invincibles’] I have huge respect for my old team-mates, but when I look at Liverpool, and what they have been doing for the past two years. People are looking at them now because last year they won a European trophy, but really they have been like this for the past two or three years. It’s amazing what they are doing - it is rare to see a team winning so many games and being so dominant against their opponents all the time. They were both great teams in history, but for me, this Liverpool team have something special. It is hard to explain what I feel when I look at Liverpool, but I don’t remember thinking the same way when I was looking at the Invincibles. They have impressed me more than Arsenal’s Invincibles. I am pretty sure Arsenal fans won’t be happy with that. But I have to be honest. When I look at this team, the motivation, the intensity, so many talented players. Something is different with them.

2020 03 28 Retrieve

[France legend Emmanuel Petit backs Spurs boss] Is Tanguay Ndombele overweight? He looks a little bit. But his body language does not help him. He needs to improve physically. When I see him I think ‘Come on, you can do more than that’. He received the same criticisms at Lyon. We all know the potential of Ndombele. I like this type of player and I used to watch him in France. He was not regularly a top player. Sometimes he could play a beautiful game - then three days later be average. He is not consistent enough. He doesn’t play well with any regularity. He has quality but I agree with Mourinho in that Ndombele could do much more. When he is very motivated, fit and ready, with his mind and body, and when he has the ambition to perform well, he becomes a top player

When you move to a new country you must make an effort to adapt. You cannot be a foreign player not speaking the same language because communication in the dressing room and on the pitch is so important. When he wakes up every morning he needs to ask the same question, ‘Am I doing the best I can?’ It is hard to be a top player and you have to sacrifice everything to get there. You cannot lie to yourself

[Ndombele’s obvious talent meant that it was considered a coup for Spurs] If he wants to be a top player he needs to perform well every game. Every player has the right to a bad game now and then. But you don’t have the right not to give 100 per cent

2020 03 29 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says Fernandes is doing what Pogba should have done!] Fernandes has made a huge impact. In the space of two months, he is the best buy in the winter market. He has made such a big impact. It’s like he’s been at the club for six years. He’s changed the mentality inside the dressing room. It’s hard for a player to come in mid-season and do that. Paul Pogba was meant to be doing this at Manchester United. It’s what he should have done in terms of leadership on the pitch. But I’m looking forward to seeing them together on the pitch, I want to see if that can work, and I’m pretty sure it can work.

2020 03 30 Retrieve

[Former France star Emmanuel Petit believes Fernandes’ impressive leadership at the Theatre of Dreams is what Pogba should have done] In the space of two months, [Fernandes] is the best buy in the winter market. He has made such a big impact. It’s like he’s been at the club for six years. He’s changed the mentality inside the dressing room. It’s hard for a player to come in mid-season and do that. Paul Pogba was meant to be doing this at Manchester United. It’s what he should have done in terms of leadership on the pitch. But I’m looking forward to seeing them together on the pitch, I want to see if that can work, and I’m pretty sure it can

2020 04 01 Retrieve

[Guardiola tipped to leave Man City if Champions League ban is upheld] I think that could be an option for him. It could be an opportunity for him to step back and have some rest. It wasn’t a long time ago that he seemed clearly tired of being a manager

You never know what could happen, but for me, the biggest worry is not what could happen if Guardiola leaves the club – there will be another manager coming if he leaves – for me the future of City is not linked with Guardiola forever. For me, the main worry is what would happen to Manchester City if the ban is still on the table after the appeal. Everything that City has been doing for the past five, six, seven years, in terms of investment. Everything they have been building could be ending soon. It could change everything at the club. Top players want to play in top competitions

2020 04 04 Retrieve

[Former Arsenal and France star Emmanuel Petit believes Fernandes is doing what Paul Pogba should have done in terms of leadership on the pitch] Fernandes has made a huge impact. In the space of two months, he is the best buy in the winter market. He has made such a big impact. It’s like he’s been at the club for six years

He’s changed the mentality inside the dressing room. It’s hard for a player to come in mid-season and do that. Paul Pogba was meant to be doing this at Manchester United. It’s what he should have done in terms of leadership on the pitch. But I’m looking forward to seeing them together on the pitch, I want to see if that can work, and I’m pretty sure it can work

2020 04 18 Retrieve

[PSG star Mbappe warned that too much ‘Neymar-izing’ could adversely affect his career] Mbappe has progressed in three years. He arrived in football with incredible potential, an unpolished diamond. He had an exorbitant transfer fee to live up to at a club populated by stars. He had to take it all on and off the pitch. In his stats, he also progressed. He has shown great maturity in many areas. Despite everything, he tends to annoy me more and more … he forces things too much … he tries to force it and makes the wrong decision. He is annoying even to his own team-mates. We forget that he is young. He has already proven great things, but we always ask for more. What he does is incredible, he has a bright future ahead of him. But putting pressure on himself because he wants to win a Ballon d’Or is annoying. He has to be careful with his behaviour. Too much ‘Neymar-izing’ could turn against him

2020 06 24 Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang should quit average Arsenal this summer] If I was Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, I would leave Arsenal. There is some quality in this team but when you arrive at the club nowadays you want to do great things. But, come on guys, Arsenal is not the same any more. It’s becoming an average club. I feel so sorry for the fans and all the people who love the club. I feel sorry for the former players that try to uphold the Arsenal reputation. But I don’t feel sorry for the players - I think 75% of them at the club at the moment don’t deserve to wear that shirt. They should look at themselves in the mirror and show some pride

Arsenal look like an average team with no spirit, with no anger or pride. I saw them against Brighton at the end of the game, trying to fight Neal Maupay, but that made me laugh. Before Covid-19 came, I thought things were different but I was surprised after the Premier League resumed to find that we’re back in the old days. Nothing changed. It’s all a question of mentality and desire. I haven’t seen any of that at Arsenal since football came back. They could have played for a century against Man City without getting a shot on goal. I wish Mikel Arteta good luck because I think he’s a quality manager but just like Unai Emery and Wenger, what is he supposed to do with these players?

2020 06 24b Retrieve

[Emmanuel Petit says David Luiz should thank God after being given a contract extension at Arsenal] David Luiz hasn’t been a proper footballer for about three years. But I’m not surprised that he has been given a new contract at Arsenal, because I’ve been very disappointed in relation to the club’s activity in the transfer market. I’ve been particularly upset in relation to the defenders. We all know one of Arsenal’s major weaknesses is their defence and nothing has changed. This makes me miss Arsene Wenger. If I was David Luiz, of course I would sign a new deal and I would also say a prayer of thanks to the Arsenal directors every time I wake up. Even when he last won the Premier League with Chelsea, he’s not the same player any more. This guy has lost something. To be honest, it’s a joke. Find some proper defenders. Are you telling me there are no young talented defenders on the market? I just don’t get it

Does anyone think the Arsenal executives and directors know what they’re doing on the football side of things? For the last few years they have been splashing out on the transfer market - and have brought in some decent players - but I don’t know what their target or project for the future is. It’s far worse now than in the last years under Wenger. What is the point of being one of the richest clubs on the planet with no reason or vision behind it?

2020 06 25 Retrieve

[Why Arsenal and Arteta ignored the mistakes to extend Luiz’s contract] David Luiz hasn’t been a proper footballer for about three years. But I’m not surprised that he has been given a new contract at Arsenal, because I’ve been very disappointed in relation to the club’s activity in the transfer market. If I was David Luiz, of course I would sign a new deal and I would also say a prayer of thanks to the Arsenal directors every time I wake up. Even when he last won the Premier League with Chelsea, he’s not the same player any more. This guy has lost something. To be honest, it’s a joke. Find some proper defenders. Are you telling me there are no young talented defenders on the market? I just don’t get it