Brazilian midfielder Fred says he’s waiting on Pep Guardiola’s call, despite links to Arsenal and Manchester United this week.

The Daily Star wrote on Sunday that Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger both want the Shakhtar Donetsk man. Their two clubs were apparently closest to a £30m deal. But the player himself told the Brazilian media he’s waiting to speak to Guardiola.

“I will certainly grow a lot with him (Guardiola),” he told Globo Esporte. “I have a big margin of progression. I have not yet received his call, I look forward to it, he will call me soon.”

It’s not exactly hard to see why Fred would be more interested in Manchester City. They’re still on course for an unbeaten season, and are most likely to win the Premier League title.

pep guardiola
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola.

City are also in the knockout rounds of the Champions League, will play Bristol City in the League Cup semi-finals and are still in the FA Cup too. The best Arsenal can put forward in response is that they’re also in the League Cup semis, playing a tougher team in Chelsea.

Fred couldn’t play for City in the Champions League, since he’s cup tied after his involvement for Shakhtar, but it’s unlikely to put him off joining the club this month. I’m not sure he’s a priority for Arsenal’s priority in January nevertheless.

The Gunners desperately need a centre-back, or maybe someone to replace Alexis Sanchez if the Chilean leaves, in my opinion. For now, they have enough options in midfield, even if it’s an area they should look to improve in the summer.