Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has said that assistant manager Mikel Arteta is very close to being officially appointed as Arsenal’s new head coach.
Speaking at his press conference this afternoon, the Spaniard confirmed that Arteta has not been at training for the last two days as he looks to seal his move to the Emirates:
“He’s in London and is close to agreeing a deal with Arsenal. It’s almost done. Yesterday, not in training, today not in training. He’s moving to Arsenal. I don’t know the details of the contract.”
When asked whether Arteta would be replaced, Guardiola said he is happy with the makeup of his backroom staff and won’t look to add any new faces for the time being:
“We will stay with the same people here. Now we don’t add, we can go with the people we have here.”
Guardiola then reflected on whether losing his assistant would be a big setback. The 48-year-old was magnanimous and said he hoped Arteta could fulfil his ambitions with the Gunners:
“He decided to move there. You cannot stop it, follow your dreams and Arsenal was a big part of his career. We wish him all the best. I’m pretty sure he will do a great job.”
Arteta has been at the Etihad since being appointed alongside Guardiola in July 2016. He has played a crucial role in helping the City boss get acclimatised to the Premier League, but even so, Guardiola has vast amounts of experience to call upon and he will certainly be able to cope without his right-hand man.