Mikel Arteta Reflects on Changed Relationship with Pep Guardiola Ahead of Arsenal vs. Manchester City Clash

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Mikel Arteta has acknowledged the shift in his relationship with Pep Guardiola since becoming Arsenal manager, as the two face off at Etihad Stadium in a crucial match this weekend.

After working closely together for three successful years, Arteta left to take charge at Arsenal, where they now find themselves competing against each other for the Premier League title.

The Spanish duo worked together between 2016 and 2019. Together, they won two Premier League titles before Arteta left to forge his path at the Emirates.

The upcoming match could have significant implications for the race, as Arsenal look to secure a league double over Manchester City and maintain their lead at the top of the table

Meanwhile, Arteta acknowledges that his relationship with Guardiola had to change due to their roles as opposing coaches, but stresses that his admiration for his former boss, Guardiola as a coach and person remains strong.

Ahead of the clash, the Gunners boss admitted his friendship with Guardiola is now distant.

Arteta told reporters: “Our relationship had to change. My admiration and what I feel for him certainly hasn’t. In my opinion, he’s the best coach in the world by a mile and he’s one of the nicest people that I’ve met in football.

“Certainly he’s one of the ones that I’ve had the most fun and laughter working with. That’s going to stay there forever. At the moment, the rules are what they are and you’re going to have to adapt to it.”

“Probably I would prefer to do it against someone who I don’t have those feelings for but that’s not a choice. It’s what it is. We both want to win. We’ll prepare for the game very well. You cannot feel different about the person, but professionally you have to act differently.”

Despite their close friendship, he is focused on preparing his team to face Guardiola with professionalism and determination.

Both coaches have a shared goal of winning, even if it means temporarily putting their relationships aside on the field.

Meanwhile, Manchester City manager, Pep Guardiola has once admitted that his relationship with his Arsenal counterpart, Mikel Arteta, has changed ever since they parted ways.

Guardiola made this known in April last year after City’s 3-0 victory over Sheffield United in the FA Cup.

Pep said: “It changed because he’s in London and I’m in Manchester, so we don’t see each other quite often.

“He’s busy, I’m busy, but the affection & the respect I have with him will remain forever, he knows that.”

As it stands, the Gunners are level on points with Liverpool, who will face Brighton on Sunday, March 31, and one above Manchester City.

Many predict Guardiola’s men will pick up the pace in the final 10 games of the season – starting against Arsenal on home soil.

Football fans across the country are anticipating drama when the two Spanish tactician go head-to-head on Easter Sunday, March 31.

What’s next?

Manchester City and Arsenal are set to face off in a pivotal Premier League clash on Easter Sunday, March 31 at Etihad Stadium. The highly anticipated match is scheduled to kick off at 4:30 pm.

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