Pep Guardiola explains decision to bring Mikel Arteta to Manchester City

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When Pep Guardiola was first announced as the new manager of Manchester City, fans quickly dreamed up the kind of names he would bring to the Etihad.

Some said Lionel Messi would arrive from Barcelona, others wondered whether Manuel Neuer could be coaxed from Bayern Munich. But no one stopped to consider Arsenal's invariably injured captain Mikel Arteta.

The Spaniard had become a forgotten figure at the Emirates after struggling to overcome a series of fitness issues. Although only 34-years-old, it had been assumed for some time that the 2015/16 season would be his last as a professional footballer.


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He had started to take his coaching badges and even took training sessions with some of Arsenal's youth teams, much to their presumed delight. A place in Arsene Wenger's coaching setup looked nailed on, at least until Guardiola came calling.

The chance to join his old friend – they spent time together at Barcelona – was too tempting to turn down. But with no real coaching experience, plenty were left wondering why Guardiola was so desperate to have him on board.

Now, all has been revealed. It appears as though Arteta's expertise in the English game is going to help Guardiola transition to the world's toughest football league. Speaking in his first official press conference as City manager, Guardiola went as far as to call Arteta "very important" and "one of the best midfielders".

He said: "Arteta is one of the best midfielders there's been and he knows English football.

"It's very important [to have him here]. He's got 12, 13 years in Scotland and here. He knows what Boxing Day is like."

So that explains it. But some fans aren't convinced.

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Mikel Arteta
Vincent Kompany
Premier League
Manchester City
Theo Walcott

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