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Premier League manager harbours ambitions of coaching Real Madrid, Barcelona, or Atletico



Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Speaking in an interview with AS, Aston Villa manager Unai Emery has admitted that he has ambitions of coaching the three elite clubs of Spain – Real Madrid, Barcelona, or Atletico Madrid.

Emery carved out a name for himself in the footballing world for the work he did at Valencia and Sevilla. Following that, the 51-year-old managed giant clubs like PSG and Arsenal before returning to Spain with Villarreal, whom he led to the UEFA Europa League triumph (2020/21) and the Champions League semi-final (2021/22).

Midway through the ongoing season, though, Emery decided to leave Villarreal to take over at Aston Villa, where he has once again done a tremendous job, taking a team that was 17th when he arrived to 5th in the Premier League table.

Emery did face some criticism for his decision to leave Villarreal to join Aston Villa this season. But explaining his decision, the 51-year-old insisted that the next step for him in Spain would be to coach one of Real Madrid, Barcelona, or Atletico, but making that leap is complicated.

“It’s really quite natural. All of us need to go in search of challenges at some time or another. I have been fortunate enough to have been at three top-level clubs in Spain: Valencia, Sevilla, and Villarreal,” he said.

“Obviously, I am very grateful for that, but then the next step in Spain would be to coach Atlético, Madrid, or Barça… But breaking through that barrier comes with a lot of difficulties.

“The Premier League has given me the chance to continue growing. Of course, Sevilla, Villarreal, and Valencia did that too, but here, I am confronted with new difficulties,” he added.

As Emery points out, it is not easy to land the job at high-profile clubs like Real Madrid, Barcelona, or Atletico Madrid. And while he may have ambitions of that being the next step in his career in Spain, an opportunity might not be forthcoming anytime soon.

Real Madrid have Carlo Ancelotti in their hotseat and if he were to leave, it seems like Zinedine Zidane would be primed to return for a third stint.

At Atletico Madrid, Diego Simeone remains a fan favourite and has turned things around after a difficult start to the season. So, there are unlikely to be any changes there anytime soon either. As for Barcelona, they are building a project with Xavi at the helm.

So, Emery may have to wait a few more years for his next step in Spain. But if he continues to do as well as he has been doing at Aston Villa, big clubs will come calling sooner rather than later.

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Atletico Madrid News

Atletico Madrid, Chelsea contact PSG midfielder’s agent with player set to leave



Photo by Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images

Atletico Madrid and Chelsea are among the clubs that have made contact with the agent of PSG midfielder Leandro Paredes, who is set to leave this summer.

This claim comes from journalist Martin Arevalo on ESPN, who states that apart from Atletico and Chelsea, an unnamed third club have also established contact with the Argentine international’s representative.

Paredes has been on PSG’s books since January 2019, when he arrived from Zenit St. Petersburg. For a large part of his time at the French capital outfit, the midfielder had been a regular starter in the side.

However, last summer saw Paredes get shipped out on loan to Juventus. He has played 33 times for the Bianconeri this season with a return of one goal and assist apiece.

The Serie A heavyweights, who were recently hit with a 10-point deduction, have the option to purchase him permanently. But, as per the report, his relationship with manager Massimiliano Allegri is not good and a return to PSG is on the cards.

And considering that he is not in the plans back at Parc des Princes either, a permanent departure away seems set in stone for Paredes.

As such, Atletico Madrid, Chelsea, and an unnamed club have shown interest in acquiring his services by making contact with the 28-year-old World Cup winner’s agent.

With Koke entering the final phase of his career and Geoffrey Kondogbia expected to leave at the end of the season, the Rojiblancos could do with reinforcements in the centre of the park.

Paredes, who has plenty of experience at the highest level and is known for his aggressive mentality, can be a good fit into Diego Simeone’s setup at the Civitas Metropolitano.

But, with Chelsea also in the picture, things could get tricky for the Colchoneros. After all, Atleti are operating on tight finances and are looking for bargain and free transfer signings in the market with the likes of Marcus Thuram, Jordi Alba, and Raphael Guerreiro emerging as targets.

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