The Arsenal captain Mikel Arteta was given a one-year extension by Arsene Wenger last summer, but only managed to make two starts in the whole campaign due to ongoing injury problems. He still made good use of the year by studying for his coaching exams and working with the youth sides to gain extra experience on the coaching side.
But next season, despite being offered a new coaching contract with the Gunners, has decided instead to accept a similar position with Manchester City to work under Pep Guardiola. He can’t actually join the Citizens until July 1st when his contract with Arsenal runs out, but he had already given notice that he would go into full time coaching after the Gunners last day win over Aston Villa. He said: “I am going to leave (it open) by one per cent because in football one per cent is a lot and things can twist very quickly.
“But I have different options now to be related to football which I am very grateful for. It is very unusual to have opportunities at this level.
“As well, that made me think it was probably time (to retire) and the way I have been watching football in the last few months – or probably over a year – it was not as a player, it was more as a coach. Then you have to think about it.”
I must admit I am surprised that he didn’t want to continue working with Wenger considering Le Prof has been so good to him since his raft of injuries over the last 18 months, but perhaps the chance of working with Guardiola was just too tempting to turn down…