Mikel Arteta maintains Pep Guardiola blueprint as Arsenal ‘make £26m bid’ for ex-Man City star
Arsenal added two former Manchester City stars to their ranks this summer and even looked to secure a third according to reports
It was a very busy summer at Arsenal, with around £120m spent and a total of 17 transfers being completed, both in and out. Despite there being a sense of frustration in the last 72 hours of the window, the level of the squad was ultimately raised which was the main objective for Mikel Arteta and Edu.
Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko were two of the standout arrivals, with both players joining from current Premier League champions Manchester City. Possessing incredible talent and a winning mentality, securing their signatures was a huge coup for the Gunners, who narrowly missed out on a top-four spot last season.
Although the opportunity to receive regular minutes as key members of the team was a big factor in both players joining, it was the relationship that they had already established with Arteta at the Etihad which helped get the deals over the line.
When Arteta left his post as Pep Guardiola’s assistant, Jesus was full of praise for the Arsenal boss, labelling him as a “fantastic guy and fantastic manager.” The Brazilian only echoed those thoughts when his signing was made official in July. “I believe 100 per cent in Mikel,” Jesus told the Arsenal website. “I had a very good time with him before, he’s a very good guy and a very good coach as well.”
It was a similar case for Zinchenko, who even admitted that he wanted to play under Arteta again if he ever ended up departing City. “I can say that even before I was thinking at (Manchester) City, if one day I’m going to leave this club, the next manager on my mind is Mikel Arteta. Since the first day at City, I really enjoyed working with him.”
Arteta is often compared to Guardiola due to his passionate demeanour and meticulous tactical approach. it is also the possession-based and attacking-minded playing style that highlights similarities between the Spaniards. Additionally, the Manchester City blueprint appears to have been merged into Arsenal’s transfer business too, with the signings of Jesus and Zinchenko at the heart of it.
However, the pair may not have been the only players with a City-related past to arrive at the Emirates Stadium this summer after reports emerged claiming that Arsenal attempted to sign Barcelona’s Ferran Torres. According to Spanish outlet El Nacional, Arsenal tried to bring Torres back to the Premier League with a £26m bid, but it was subsequently rejected.
It’s added that staff at the Blaugrana were initially willing to let him go, but Xavi insisted the forward should stay. Torres joined Manchester City in 2020, where he made 43 appearances and scored 16 goals. Despite playing an increasingly important role under Guardiola, Torres left for Barcelona just a year later in a deal worth an initial £46m.
It’s believed Arsenal were looking at a number of wingers to potentially recruit after Nicolas Pepe joined OGC Nice on a season-long loan before injuries to Mohamed Elneny and Thomas Partey changed plans before last Thursday’s deadline.