Mikel Arteta has reportedly told friends that he wants to leave Arsenal at the end of the season, sensational reports in Spain claim. It is said that the Spaniard’s positive relationship with the Emirates Stadium hierarchy would see them ‘agree’ to him prematurely terminating his contract which is due to expire in 2025. Arsenal deny the reports.
Arsenal’s battles with Manchester City for the Premier League title are said to have taken their toll on Arteta. The former Gunners midfielder has been in charge since replacing Unai Emery in late 2019 and has overseen a major overhaul in north London.
Arteta took over a side that had not qualified for the Champions League since 2016. Ridding the squad of high-earning and under-performing players, he has cultivated a more positive atmosphere at the Emirates Stadium.
According to Spanish publication Sport, that work has had an impact on Arteta, who has reportedly told his close circle that he could step down at the end of the season. ‘Maximum discretion’ is reportedly being applied while Arteta sees how the remaining stretch of the Premier League campaign plays out.
Incidentally, it comes after Xavi announced his decision to resign as Barcelona manager once the 2023-24 season has concluded, with Arteta previously strongly linked with the Barca job. The report insists that the La Liga giants have not approached the 41-year-old, although president Joan Laporta has publicly declared his admiration for his work.
Arteta played in Barca’s famed La Masia academy and grew up as a close friend of Pep Guardiola. He later joined Guardiola’s coaching staff at Manchester City before being appointed as Arsenal head coach.
Xavi announced his decision to leave Barca after seeing his side beaten 5-3 at home by Villarreal on Saturday night. Los Blaugrana led 3-2 until the 83rd minute before capitulating at their temporary Montjuic venue.
“Before you ask me the pertinent questions, I want to announce that as of June 30, I will not continue as Barca coach,” Xavi said afterwards.