The Gunners have failed to qualify for Europe’s top club competition in the previous two seasons, finishing a distant sixth in the Premier League in Arsene Wenger’s final year in charge.
They also reached the Europa League semi-final under Wenger, losing to eventual winners Atletico Madrid, to again miss out on the Champions League.
Unai Emery would add another Europa League trophy to his collection over a top-four finish
He took charge of training in the pouring rain as Arsenal prepare to take on Everton
Many of the squad were already beaming before they even began at London Colney.
Lucas Torreira seemed perfectly fine despite taking a physical battering against VorsklaEmery replaced the Frenchman in the Emirates Stadium dugout over the summer and has been charged with changing Arsenal’s fortunes.
The 43-year-old won three successive Europa League titles during his tenure at Sevilla and said he would prioritize lifting the trophy once more.
Asked how he would prefer to qualify for the Champions League, Emery replied: ‘One choice? For me, the Europa League is very important because it is one title and I think for us, every title is the best way, the best performance, the best future.’
Emery will hope Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang’s confidence will be up after a string of starts
Emile Smith Rowe made his debut in the Europa League and will be eyeing up more game time while the former Paris Saint-Germain boss wants silverware in his first season in England, he also admitted that a strong league showing is a must.
‘The Premier League is very important because I think it is the first competition of importance for us because that gives us the big credibility on this season,’ he added. ‘Thirty-eight matches give us and give opponents the clarity to show who is the best for the top four. It is clear that we have a very, very competitive team to do that – I am confident in my team.’
Emery made eight changes for his opening Europa League game in charge – a 4-2 win over Vorskla Poltava on Thursday night.
Mesut Ozil was in a good mood after coming off the bench to score in the Europa League
Welbeck will want to silence the critics who say he hasn’t deserved his recent England call-ups
Emery will be delighted at how well summer signing Sokratis has settled into English football likes of Petr Cech, Aaron Ramsey, Mesut Ozil, and Alexandre Lacazette dropped out of the side and will be pushing for recalls at home to Everton on Sunday.
Lucas Torreira was handed his first start since joining in the summer but came off before the hour mark and sat on the bench icing his knee. It remains to be seen if he will be fit to keep his place against the Toffees, while Henrikh Mkhitaryan could also miss out after suffering a minor ankle injury in the same game.