Mikel Arteta on Pep Guardiola: ‘It doesn’t change our friendship’

Arsenal and Manchester City are in a close fight for the title Premier League this season, but the north London club’s manager, Mikel Arteta, has claimed it will not affect his friendship with counterpart Pep Guardiola. The former midfielder was Guardiola’s assistant at City from 2016 to 2019, before Arsenal appointed him as coach in place of Unai Emery.

The Gunners currently top the Premier League table with 50 points on the clock, five points ahead of the Citizens who have played one game more. The teams play each other for the first time this season at the Etihad Stadium on Friday, in the FA Cup fourth round.

Asked how he felt about facing Guardiola in this particular context, Arteta told reporters: “I always dreamed of one day being in this scenario and it is happening this season. Obviously, it won’t change our friendship, and it doesn’t negate how important he is to my life and career. We both want to win and defend our clubs in the best possible way. This has always been the case since day one. »

Arteta, who guided Arsenal to the FA Cup title in 2020, believes that a victory on Friday would give his team an extra boost and boost their confidence. “ It’s a big test against, in my opinion, the best football team in the world. I can not wait to be there. That will tell us a lot about our current level.”

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