Mikel Arteta is now ‘first choice’ to take over from Arsene Wenger, following the news that Massimiliano Allegri plans to stay at Juventus, according to reports.
The Independent write that the former Gunners is now seen by the Arsenal hierarchy as ‘the preferable candidate for the manager job’. They’re also wary that they need someone who can unite the fans, so they haven’t given up on Allegri entirely. However, at this point it does seem like the Italian is ruling himself out of the job.
Regardless, it seems right now Arteta is the favourite. The papers and the bookmakers seem to be in agreement on that.
The 36-year-old already has five years of experience at Arsenal, two of which were as club captain. Then he retired and left to become assistant coach at Manchester City. There he helped the club win the League Cup and the Premier League in his first two seasons.
It’s hard to know if Arteta’s ready to manage a club, since he hasn’t ever done so before. Then again, Pep Guardiola only had one year in charge of Barcelona’s B team when the first-team appointed him as manager. I think everyone would agree he did alright, despite having no prior experience running a club.
Ian Wright certainly seemed to support the move, speaking on Sunday’s Match of the Day on BBC One. He said: “You’ve got to take a chance on people. I think that they need somebody that knows the club. He’s been under Pep for a couple of years.
“I think those players need a little bit of a kick up the backside and I think he might be the man to do it.”
We’ll know for sure whether the board agree in the coming weeks.