Mikel Arteta returns to his former club Arsenal as their new head coach and has quit his role as Pep Guardiola’s number two at Manchester City to become a manager.
The Spaniard, who played for the club for five years, has been given a 3 and a half year deal as he becomes the permanent replacement for Unai Emery who was sacked at the end of November.
Former Arsenal player and Invincibles member Freddie Ljunbjerg took over on a temporary basis but with the arrival of Arteta, the Swede’s role at the club is unknown.
Arteta was one of the favourites to get the Gunners job back in 2018 after club legend Arsene Wenger stepped down and was extremely close to being appointed.
However, the owners and the club hierarchy decided to go for a safer and more experienced choice in former Paris Saint-Germain manager Unai Emery.
Following Arsenal’s terrible start to the campaign where they failed to produce results or play good football, Emery was let go and Arteta instantly became a favourite for the job.
However, names such as Carlo Ancelotti, Massimiliano Allegri and Patrick Vieira were all touted as well and the bosses had to narrow a shortlist containing 14 managers down to one.
Arteta, who was also linked with the Everton job, has now got a lot of work to do as the Gunners sit in a lowly 10th position in the Premier League.
Champions League football looks unlikely to come via the league despite still only being seven points behind 4th placed Chelsea.
Arsenal have advanced to the Europa League knock out stages and this will be their best chance to qualify for the Champions League but they have been given a tough draw.
They will face Greek side Olympiacos who are in the Europa League having finished third in their Champions League group which contained Bayern Munich and Arsenal’s arch-rivals Tottenham Hotspur.
The former Everton player spoke on his and the club’s ambitions and the philosophy that he will bring to the club.
Arteta stated that the club has to start challenging for trophies but he knows that change at the club will not happen overnight.
He also stated his excitement of working with the talented crop of youngsters that have been coming through the academy.
The 37-year-old wants to play a fluid possession-based attacking style of play that Arsenal have been renowned for under Arsene Wenger.