Mikel Arteta the former Gunners midfielder’s has agreed in principle to succeed Arsene Wenger as Arsenal Manager. The club is believed to make the announcement soon, immediately the 36-year-old Spaniard signs the contract in the coming days.
It may sound surprising to many, who might have been expecting a high profile coach to replace Arsene Wenger, but the club settled for Arteta, Pep Guardiola’s current assistant coach at Manchester City because Arsenal wants a young and dynamic coach, who understands the modern European football structure, to take care of the club. Furthermore, Mikel Arteta played a huge impact in the club’s successful seasons. The choice for Arteta, who has a close relationship with Gunner’s chief executive Ivan Gazidis, became clear after other coaches like former Barcelona boss Luis Enrique and Massimiliano Allegri, the present coach of Juventus ruled themselves out. With the presence of Sven Mislintat, the head of recruitment and new head of football relations Raul Sanllehi, who are believed to be close to Arteta, the new coach is expected to bring in his own staff. While some reports have it that Santi Cazorla is one of the potential staff, there are rumours that the futures Steve Bould and Jens Lehmann, who are presently at the club are uncertain, although both are offered to stay with the club.
Arteta left an impressive legacy at Arsenal, making 150 appearances for the club during his four seasons for the club. He scored 16 goals with 11 assistants. He retired gracefully in 2016.
There is no doubt, Mikel Arteta was a successful footballer; the question is: Can he transcend his football skills into coaching abilities and turn the once mighty Arsenal around? The expectations and indeed pressure cannot be more.