Mikel Arteta looks to spark Arsenal revival by landing first punch on mentor Pep Guardiola

You could almost hear the admiration climbing out of Mikel Arteta’s throat, coating his words as he tracked back to the first training session Pep Guardiola undertook as Manchester City manager.

It was the summer of 2016 and the Basque was a new addition to the coaching set-up under the former Barcelona and Bayern Munich tactician, who moved to conquer English football after his mastery in Spain and Germany.

The pair dovetailing had shoots in 2012, was broached again in 2015 and was finally over the line a year later.

Arteta had always appreciated Guardiola’s mind, stretching back to when he was a youth player at Camp Nou and Pep was winding down his on-pitch career at the club; both men united by their defensive midfield methodology and a desire to subtly impose themselves on games.

Now, the protege was given a front row view to the genius in

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