Very few figures have been as supportive of Pep Guardiola throughout his successful stint with Manchester City as his right hand man and assistant Mikel Arteta.
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After City’s 3-0 win over Arsenal on Sunday, Guardiola highlighted on the positive influence the 37-year-old has had on City’s recent glory, amid reports linking Arteta to Arsenal’s vacant manager role.
“[He has] a lot [of influence],” Guardiola told Sky Sports. “He is part of the huge success we had. An important part. What will happen will happen. I think he is part of our staff so what is going to happen I don’t know.
The storied manager doesn’t want his assistant to leave Manchester, but made it clear the last thing he wants to do is shoot down any possibilities of Arteta starting his managerial career. In Guardiola’s words, he doesn’t want the former Arsenal midfielder to feel “uncomfortable.”
“At the end it’s personal, if he wants a job we are open to talk,” he added. “I don’t want to make him uncomfortable.”
In a span of over three years, the two Spaniards have won a grand total of seven titles with City – two Premier Leagues, an FA Cup, two EFL Cups, and two FA Community Shields.
Following Arsenal’s loss to the defending champions at the Emirates, interim manager and Arsenal legend Freddie Ljungberg urged the club’s board to come to a decision on the managerial situation in North London.
“…I said I think it needs to be cleared up, to make a decision so everybody knows,” Ljungberg said. “That is something I’ve said but it is totally up to the club. I am very honored and I’m trying to do things as good as I can. I think it would be good to make a decision, regardless of what it is.”
From 2011 to 2016, Arteta played for the Gunners, making 110 appearances and scoring 14 goals. In 2016, the Spaniard retired following a 17-year career.