"If Barca called me, I would go. It is my club" - Pep Guardiola defends Mikel Arteta's decision to join Arsenal
Pep Guardiola has backed Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta's decision to return to his former club to take up the role of head coach.
He revealed that he would have done the same with Barcelona if he was an assistant and got called up by the Catalan giants to manage them.
He made this known during an interview in defense of his former assistant Arteta, who left Manchester City to take up a coaching role with the Gunners.
The Spanish tactician worked under Guardiola as an assistant between 2016-2019 before returning to the Emirates where he spent five seasons as a player.
While reacting to his former colleague's decision to ditch City for Arsenal, Guardiola said (via Football Espana):
"When Arteta was my assistant at City, he celebrated all the goals madly except the ones against Arsenal."
"He loved Arsenal. It’s like my relationship with Barça. If I were an assistant coach and Barca called me, I will go, it’s my club.”
Guardiola has already had one spell with the Catalans where he spent four seasons at Camp Nou.
Arteta, on the other hand, has been able to follow in the footsteps of his former boss Guardiola. The Spaniard has transformed Arsenal into one of the best teams in the Premier League.
The Gunners are currently at the top of the log with 50 points after 19 games. They are also on course to win what will be a historic league title should they maintain their current momentum in the title race.
Mikel Arteta heaps praise on Arsenal's new signing Leandro Trossard
The Gunners boss has had first words about his club's new signing, Leandro Trossard, who made his debut in a 3-2 home victory against Manchester United.
The north London club completed the signing of Trossard from fellow Premier League side Brighton & Hove Albion for a fee in the region of £27 million.
The Belgian forward went on to make a decent debut against Manchester United at the Emirates. Head coach Arteta spoke on his impression of the 28-year-old star as seen in the Mirror:
"That's what I like about him. I see a player who is willing to make things happen and he's really composed, especially in the final third."
Speaking about Trossard's role in Edward Nketiah's goal, Arteta said,
"It was something that we needed to add to the team and straight away, he had a beautiful impact on the team to help us win. Obviously, we have two more recruits we made in this window."
Youngsters like Trossard's success in north London will have an immense impact on the longevity of Arteta's career as a Gunner.