Arsenal legend Freddie Ljungberg has explained his decision to leave his role at the club at the end of last season. Ljungberg returned to Arsenal as the club’s under-23 coach in June 2018 after a spell as assistant manager to Andries Jonker at Wolfsburg. The Swede was then promoted to the first-team staff under Unai Emery a year later.
Ljungberg was appointed as the interim head coach in November 2019 following the sacking of Unai Emery.
However, his spell in charge was not a successful one, winning just one of his six matches in all competitions.
The Swede missed out on the job on a permanent basis, with Mikel Arteta taking over the reins at the Emirates in December.
Ljungberg had a more backseat role after that, watching games from the stands rather than sitting alongside Arteta on the bench.
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And in August it was announced the 43-year-old had parted ways with the club.
Having won five major trophies in a nine-year spell at Arsenal, Ljungberg still holds the Gunners close to his heart.
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But he felt the timing was right for him to become a first-team manager elsewhere.
Ljungberg is yet to find a new role and appeared as a pundit on Sky Sports on Sunday for coverage of Arsenal’s trip to Leeds United.
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“Yeah, 100 per cent [it was a tough decision to leave],” Ljungberg said on Sky Sports.
“Everybody knows how much I love that club. I’ve had a lot of very good relationships and stuff like that, so of course it would be easy for me to have a comfortable life and stay there.
“But I felt that I’ve been an assistant a lot for a manager and I felt I’m ready to manage myself.
“To be able to do that I felt I had to leave and try to stand on my own two feet. Not an easy decision but I think it was the right thing to do for my career.
“I want to be a manager. I’ve tried to do all the work and tried to learn from a lot of good managers, and [now] I try to do it myself.
“Yeah exactly [I’m just waiting for the opportunity], something that fits all parties, and we’ll wait and see.”
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