Mikel Arteta appointed Arsenal head coach

Arsenal have announced the appointment of former Manchester City assistant Mikel Arteta as their new head coach.

The 37-year-old Spaniard, a former Gunners captain, has agreed a three-and-a-half-year contract to succeed Unai Emery, who was sacked last month.

Arteta played more than 100 times for Arsenal – his final club before retiring. He joined City’s coaching staff in 2016 and will now embark on his first managerial post at his old club.

Sunday’s 3-0 defeat to City increased the need for the Gunners to end the uncertainty over the manager’s position, leaving the club as close to the relegation zone as they are to the top four.

Interim head coach Freddie Ljungberg replaced Emery but has won just one of his four Premier League games at the helm, while the club are on a run of only one win from their last 12 fixtures.

When Arteta’s old side City beat Arsenal at the weekend, the former Everton midfielder was in the dugout alongside Guardiola.

Talks started afterwards with Arsenal managing director Vinai Venkatesham pictured outside Arteta’s house in the early hours of Monday morning.

Mikel understands Arsenal Football Club and what it means to our fans around the world. We look forward to him getting down to work and bringing the best out of our squad as we work to get our season back on track.

Head of football Raul Sanllehi said the club had interviewed other names before opting to pursue Arteta.

“We met several top-class candidates and Mikel stood out to every single one of us as the perfect person for us,” he said in a club statement.

“Mikel understands Arsenal Football Club and what it means to our fans around the world. We look forward to him getting down to work and bringing the best out of our squad as we work to get our season back on track.”

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