Arsenal may be willing to perform a serious overhaul of their squad during the summer, but it seems their one side are prepared to lure Mikel Arteta across North London.
Tottenham Hotspur are tracking the progress of Gunners captain Mikel Arteta, who is one of the standout names that will be leaving the Emirates at the end of the season.
The 34-year-old is set to retire from football following a lengthy career at both Everton and Arsenal that has seen him rack up just short of 300 Premier League appearances.
But following the signings of both Mohamed Elneny and emergence of Francis Coquelin the chance for Arteta to reclaim his place in the starting XI is looking bleak.
However, the Spaniard has not lost any of the qualities that first alerted Arsene Wenger to signing him back in 2011, and that’s why Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino is taking a fancy.
Having won two FA Cup trophies in the last two seasons with the Gunners, Arteta is now being lined up to take on a coaching role once his contract runs out following this campaign.
That has rang alarm bells at the likes of Tottenham and Manchester City, who are looking like strong contenders to hand the midfielder a tempting contract with top level talent.
Rumours have recently been brought up that incoming City boss Pep Guardiola likes the prospect of working with Arteta again following their time at Barcelona.
Guardiola will have it all to do in a season of expectancy if Manchester City fail to win a major trophy this season, and Arteta can provide a distinctive knowledge of Premier League life.
Meanwhile Pochettino can offer a package that includes definite Champions League football at a club that is moving forward with an exciting squad and new stadium to move into.
Pochettino has played alongside Arteta during their PSG day and the pair built a good relationship before moving on, but Pochettino isn’t giving anything away.
I love him and he loves me, you now our history from Paris Saint Germain, when he was 17 and I was the captain.
We have a very good relationship, but I never speak about rumours.
It is not yet known whether Arteta wants to move into a coaching role, and with his fitness being the only real reason he’s staying out of the team, he could want to continue playing.
He’ll have offers on the table there’s no doubt, but Arsenal can’t afford to carry on paying the wages to a man that will be warming the bench for the majority of next season.
Instead, they could offer him a player-coaching role that will help him to build his badges at a club that has given him so much, that of course will be in a season that looks to be Wenger’s last.
The Gunners manager is a huge admirer of Arteta and has already boasted that the veteran has the qualities to become a top level coach in the near future.
However, we’ve seen Manchester City work on offers like this before with the likes of Frank Lampard and Patrick Vieira given one year contracts purely to get experience into the side.
As a former Gunner, Vieira now works as the head coach of New York City with the long-term plan to one day manage back in English football, but can Wenger afford to let something similar happen with Arteta?