Arsenal are said to be closing in on securing Mikel Arteta in the wake of Jurgen Klopp's decision to leave Liverpool at the end of the season.
Klopp’s announcement emerged as a shock to the footballing world. The Liverpool boss is set to leave the club after nine years after transforming the Reds into Premier League, European, and World champions.
Liverpool will now be on the hunt for a successor, with Xabi Alonso touted as a potential option. Mikel Arteta is unlikely to be lined up by the Reds, but he has attracted interest from overseas.
Arsenal set to offer Mikel Arteta new long-term contract amid Barcelona interest
Arteta undoubtedly took inspiration from Klopp's work at Anfield in regards to his own rebuild in north London. The Spaniard endured several bumps in the road towards the start of his tenure, but we can now say he's massively changed the club's trajectory, returning the Gunners to the top of the Premier League. Arsenal are reportedly preparing to extend the manager's contract.
Barcelona were previously interested in securing Arteta’s services back in 2022, but the Spaniard never considered leaving Arsenal. When asked about a possible move to the Camp Nou, he said: "What I can say is that I am extremely happy and proud to be where I am. Barcelona now they are in a really good path now, with a phenomenal coach, a coach that has been an absolute legend in that club and has lifted the whole place. You have to be very respectful of that."
That "phenomenal coach", however, will be leaving the club at the end of the season, sparking rumours of an Arteta switch to Catalonia.
Arteta's connection to Barca means the move is feasible, but can you really see the Spaniard stepping away from his project at the Emirates? The 41-year-old has committed a lot of energy to his process and it can be assumed that he won't walk away without at least winning a major title.
While it is possible that simply his love and admiration for the club may not be enough to keep him, the effort he has put into bringing Arsenal where they are now certainly is.