Mikel Arteta wants Arsene Wenger to play bigger role at Arsenal as door open for return

Mikel Arteta has opened the door to Arsene Wenger to play a wider role with Arsenal.

It comes after the Spaniard admitted he would relish aid from the Gunners legend, who was at the club for 22 years.

Wenger is the north London club’s longest-serving manager of all-time and has been credited with revolutionising the way the Premier League was played.

While his attacking football on the pitch was a joy to behold for many in Arsenal’s prime, with the likes of Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp and Robert Pires among the best players the top-flight has ever seen.

Arteta has been desperate to replicate some of the success his old manager had with the Gunners and started his managerial career with an FA Cup – just six months into his time at the club.

But it has been something of a rollercoaster since after a torrid campaign last season that saw Arsenal finish eighth in the Premier League.

It meant that the club went into the following year without European football for the first time since 1996 – coincidentally Wenger’s first season in charge.

And Arteta would love to welcome his old mentor back to the Emirates and admitted it was him that inspired him to become a manager in the first place.

Arteta said: “If it was not for him I would not be in the position I am today and I wouldn’t have enjoyed the career I had.

“I was still young and I had my ideas, but he was a different level of inspiration on how I looked at the game.

“He was very good at being able to transmit what a football club meant into the players and he put different question marks on me. That is why I started to study and take coaching much more seriously.”

Wenger has not strictly ruled out a return to football management and currently occupies a post with FIFA as Chief of Global Football Development.

However, Arteta admitted he would welcome the 72-year-old back at the club in some form of role.

The Spaniard added: “I would like him to be more present at the club. I think the players would love him, benefit, and be inspired to have him around and I think for the club it would be a huge boost.

“It was so intense for him for over 20 years and you need to get away a little bit, but I think it would be so beneficial for all parties to have him more present.”

And while Wenger’s coaching dream is not dead in the water, the Frenchman hinted that any role would likely be an international level.

He said: “I’m crazy enough to be crazy and to make a crazy decision, but I’m determined at the moment not to do it, maybe a national team at some stage.

“But at the moment I’m involved in projects with FIFA and I want to go to the end with it and that’s for me more useful now.”

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