Arsenal will reportedly offer Mikel Arteta a new two-year deal in order to ward off interest from Manchester City who see the Spaniard as a potential replacement for Pep Guardiola.
Speaking back in December, Mikel Arteta said that the club had yet to open talks with him about a new deal as he headed towards the last 18-months of his current contract.
Now, however, the Daily Mail are reporting exclusively, that a new deal is on the table.
“No, we haven’t discussed anything like that,” Arteta said just last month.
“I think we have many other priorities at the moment that are far more important than that.
“I don’t know (if it will be at the end of the season), really I’m not thinking about that. I’m just trying to get the best out of the team, trying to cope with all the situations that we are facing at the moment.”
The Mail report that Arsenal are happy with the progress being made at the club under Arteta, while his off-the-pitch management is also said to have received nods of approval, especially when he convinced them all to take a pay cut at the start of the pandemic.
Arteta’s current deal is due to expire in 2023, the same time as Guardiola’s at City.
An extension would also come with an increase to his £5m-a-year salary.
There is much speculation around Guardiola’s future at Manchester City but it doesn’t appear that Arteta’s former boss will be going anywhere soon, although he maintains he will make a decision about his future at the end of the season.
“I’m not good enough to think far away,” Guardiola said this week.
“My future always depends on results. So, play Southampton [on Saturday], rest a little bit then [carry on] and at the end of the season we’ll see what happens.
“Still we can play better, still some players can improve [and] I see things I don’t like. I won’t think about the future when I still have the contract I have.
“I don’t know [how long I will remain in elite-level management] – I feel good and comfortable. When I’m not energetic and feel a little bit drained or tired, I’m pretty sure I will quit. But right now, I feel good.
“My decision [when to leave City] will be taken with the club. They gave me everything so I cannot betray them. Or do anything wrong to them. That would not be nice.
“Together we took decisions for me to come here and to extend the contract two times [until now] and it will be the same [in future]: it depends how they feel about me, how I feel myself in the club.
“Now I never think for 24 hours a day what is going to happen far away. In football the end of the season is far away.”