Ahead of their FA Cup clash on Friday, Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola said he considered Arsenal coach Mikel Arteta as a replacement when he leaves City. Arteta was Guardiola’s assistant at City, but joined his former club in 2019. This season, he is guiding the Gunners potentially to their first Premier League title since 2004. He is currently five points clear of his mentor Guardiola on top of the table. “I am pretty sure if I would have left before, he would be here and he would be the best,” Guardiola said Thursday. “But I extended the contract, I am sorry, and he didn´t wait, so it could not happen.”
Guardiola last week warned his players that Arsenal would “destroy” them if their performances didn´t improve in the second half of the season. And while there have been doubts about Arsenal´s ability to maintain a title challenge after failing to even qualify for the Champions League since 2016, City´s manager has repeatedly described the league leaders as the team to beat.” When the team makes 50 points it is because they have been the best, and they are,” Guardiola said. “We have to prove how far away or how close we are and the best way to notice is to perform at our best level. Otherwise, against a team at that level, it will be difficult.”

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