Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta on Barcelona shortlist to replace Xavi | Football

Barcelona are set to reignite their interest in Mikel Arteta (Reuters)

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta will be on Barcelona’s shortlist of candidates to replace Xavi, according to reports in Spain.

Following Barca’s 5-3 defeat at home to Villarreal on Saturday night, Xavi announced that he will step down as head coach the end of the season.

‘I think the club needs a change of dynamic,’ said Xavi.

‘For the good of the players, I believe that they will free themselves. We play with a lot of tension.

‘For the good of the board of directors, it is best that I leave. I will give my best. I think all of that will help the dynamic change. This is the message I would like to give. I think I am doing the right thing.’

Barcelona head coach Xavi

Xavi has announced he will leave Barcelona at the end of the season (Reuters)

According to Gerard Romero, Barcelona’s hierarchy had already begun seeking out replacements for Xavi, with Deco speaking to the agents of potential candidates in the last few weeks.

Romero claims that Arteta will now be on Barcelona’s managerial shortlist alongside the elite coaches represented by Jorge Mendes, Julian Nagelsmann and potentially Jurgen Klopp, who announced on Friday that he is leaving Liverpool at the end of the season.

Barcelona have been admirers of Arteta for several years, with the Arsenal manager linked with becoming manager after the club sacked Ronald Koeman in October 2021.

Arteta signed a new contract less than a year later, which keeps him tied to Arsenal until the summer of 2025.

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