Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola believes senior coach Mikel Arteta will leave the club soon to become a manager elsewhere.
Arteta, an assistant coach at City, is highly regarded in coaching circles and it is widely believed that he will be in the running for future managements openings at top clubs.
Indeed, the former central midfielder has been linked to the Arsenal job – he was reportedly in the running to replace Arsene Wenger in the summer of 2018 and is now rumoured to be in-line to replace Unai Emery – who was appointed 18 months ago.
Arteta enjoyed a successful playing career in the UK with stints at Glasgow Rangers, Everton and Arsenal before moving to Guardiola’s coaching staff when he was appointed at the club in 2016.
However, the Gunners have failed to win in six consecutive matches for the first time in more than two decades and the rumour mill has kickstarted once more.
“Of course he will be a manager sooner or later, we are going to finish the season and in the future I don’t know what will happen,” Guardiola is cited as telling reporters by the Telegraph.
“He was an incredible player. Normally holding midfielders have a vision on the pitch. When you are a striker you think of the goals and keepers save it, but the holding midfielder is an incredible lesson during your period as a football player to learn what happens.
“You go to school, you read it, you understand it completely. And he was so clever in that. More than that, he is an incredible human being and has a work ethic. He’s already a manager – he behaves as a manager and that is why we are so satisfied to have him here.
“I would like him to stay with us as much as possible, Manchester City has an incredibly valuable person to work in this club for the future.
“But personal life is personal life and professional desire is for professionals… everyone, not just me, is more than happy to have him here but what happens at the end of the season, I don’t know.”