Former Gunner Mikel Arteta has emerged as the favourite to succeed outgoing manager Arsene Wenger. Reports have emerged that he has agreed a deal in principle to take over. However, he is yet to sign the contract and seal the deal.
But there are positive signs coming from the club and an official announcement is imminent. The Spaniard captained the Gunners during his active years but retired in 2016. He moved to coaching soon afterwards.
Arteta has partnered Pep Guardiola at Manchester City since 2016 and the partnership has borne fruit this season with a Premier League title.
Arteta was one of the front-runners along with Massimiliano Allegri, but Allegri wished to remain at Juventus. The former midfielder will likely make a host of changes to Arsenal’s backroom team.
Arteta has a bit of history with the head of medical services, Colin Lewin. Lewin has been in the team for 23 years and the 36-year-old Spaniard blames him for rushing him back after an injury. This occurred back when he was skipper at the Emirates.
Mikel Arteta will be also be working in tandem with new head scout and head of football relations Sven Mislintat.
Wenger said, “I don’t want to influence that decision – it’s important they make their choice in an objective way and I don’t want anything I say to be misconstrued.
“I know how you do these things – if I say something nice about somebody you will say I am backing him but this is not the case.
“For Arteta, does he have all the qualities to do the job? Yes. He was a leader and he has a good passion for the game and he knows the club well.
“He knows what is important at the club and he was captain of the club. So why not? But whoever they choose I will support.”
Arsenal are also planning to speak to former Gunner Thierry Henry about the managerial vacancy next week. Henry is currently gearing up for the World Cup as assistant to the Belgium national team.
Patrick Vieira, New York City manager, is also one of candidates that Arsenal are assessing.