Newcastle United: Unai Emery to reject Newcastle interest

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Unai Emery won in May the Europa League with Villarreal, beating Manchester United on penalties

Guillem Balague reports that Unai Emery has decided to decline the opportunity to manage Newcastle United, and will instead remain with Villarreal.

Ex-Arsenal boss said Tuesday that he was approached by Premier League clubs, who made him their first choice for replacing Steve Bruce.

According to Emery's sources, Emery felt that the Magpies new ownership didn't have a clear vision.

Newcastle had hoped that the Spaniard would be in place by the weekend.

Balague, a Spanish football expert, says Emery's advisors left uncertain about their strategy. Stories in England revealed that Emery and Eddie Howe were the two shortlisted candidates. These men have contrasting approaches and vastly differing levels of European football experience.

"Emery felt immense pressure on the day [a 2-0 victory over Young Boys in Champions League on Tuesday]," stated Balague.

"Then there was the lack in clarity from the club. Do you approach him so quickly, without an offer, and with the English side confirming that you are ready to accept it?

"I don’t see this move happening this season." Perhaps next year, when the club's structure and vision are clearer."

Emery, 50 years old, was interested in taking over Newcastle after the 305m Saudi Arabia-backed takeover that made them one the most wealthy clubs in football.

Villarreal's family, the Roigs, tried to convince him to stay when he met them. His family and the club's players agreed with him.

Newcastle also spoke to Howe and had discussions with Paulo Fonseca, an ex-Roma manager.

Balague reports that the Magpies had previously approached Antonio Conte, Barcelona legend Xavi, and Joachim Low for the new Tottenham manager. However, all of them turned down the chance.

Fernando Roig, president of Villarreal, stated that he wasn't concerned about Emery's interest and that his mind was not wandering.

Roig stated that Unai has signed a contract with them and that contracts must be fulfilled. "We hope we can see that contract through to the end. His professionalism is unquestionable in this regard.

Emery won last season's Europa League, beating Manchester United by penalties in the final.

He was in charge of Arsenal for 18 months before he was appointed at Villarreal.

He won three consecutive Europa League titles at Sevilla between 2013-16. After that, he joined Paris St-Germain where he won Ligue 1 as well as two French Cups.

Villarreal is 13th in La Liga with two wins in their first 11 games. However, Tuesday's win over Young Boys saw them level on points at Manchester United at the top Champions League Group F. They are now in a strong position for the final 16.

Emery's decision means Newcastle's manager search enters a third week. Bruce and Emery parted ways on 20 October. Graeme Jones, the interim boss, took over the team's last two matches: a 1-1 draw against Crystal Palace followed by a 3-0 home loss to Chelsea.