Arteta Inches Closer To Arsenal Move

Arsene Wenger: Mikel Arteta has quality to become Arsenal manager

Arsene Wenger believes Manchester City coach Mikel Arteta has the "qualities" required to succeed him at Arsenal.

Arsenal are said to be keen to appoint their new manager before the World Cup starts and have seen other potential candidates fall by the wayside.

Arteta has emerged as the shock candidate to replace his former manager at Emirates Stadium despite his lack of managerial experience.

Although the likes of Massimiliano Allegri, Luis Enrique and Patrick Vieira have all been linked with the job, it is beginning to look increasingly likely that Arteta will take over this summer.

"The obvious player [that we missed out on] that comes to mind is [Cristiano] Ronaldo", Wenger, whose last game in charge finished in a 1-0 win over Huddersfield Town last week, told Arsenal.com.

A number of Arsenal's backroom staff have followed Wenger out of the door as the club prepare for life beyond the Frenchman.

Shaun Botterill  GettyImages
Shaun Botterill GettyImages

Arteta, now Man City's assistant coach, has expressed his interest in the role to both Pep Guardiola and City's Director of Football Aitor "Txiki" Begiristain, who have given the former Everton and Arsenal midfielder the go ahead to complete the move.

It is understood the former midfield hardman, who made 406 appearances for the club, was angered by the token gesture with Arteta nearly certain to be given the gig.

Arteta, 36, is now the clear favourite to take the managers job at the North London club after Wenger stepped down just a week ago following a 22-year stint at Arsenal, which he had previously described as a "Love affair".

Wenger, 68, said: "Overall he has the qualities but I don't want to influence that publicly".

However, Wenger is very aware that he can not be seen as influencing Arsenal's decision and stressed that he will back whoever the club decide to appoint.

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