Arsenal have not contacted Manchester City to negotiate a deal for Mikel Arteta to become their manager.
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Arteta has emerged as the leading candidate – although he should think twice – to permanently replace Unai Emery at the Emirates Stadium.
Freddie Ljungberg was placed in interim charge at the end of last month but has won just one of his five matches, thus expediating the process of finding a long-term solution.
Despite having seemingly identified Arteta as their first choice, the award-winning Athletic claim City ‘are yet to receive an approach from or enter into negotiations with Arsenal’.
David Ornstein adds that if such a formal discussion is started, City will demand a seven-figure compensation fee.
Arsenal executives did not mention Arteta to their City counterparts when the two sides met in the Premier League on Sunday, while managing director Vinai Venkatesham and director of football operations Huss Fahmy visited the 37-year-old at his Manchester apartment late on Sunday after Arteta ‘was not comfortable’ meeting straight after City’s 3-0 win in London.
Arteta ‘has informed’ City that he has held talks with Arsenal, who had hoped that their former midfielder would be able to meet with director Josh Kroenke for a ‘golden handshake’ on Monday morning, but to no avail.
Ornstein says Arsenal ‘are hopeful’ of still appointing the Spaniard, with staff ‘in favour’ of the decision as it would help restore their ‘identity’.