Arsenal coach Mikel Arteta said his focus is entirely on improving results, amid speculation about the possibility of his transfer to Barcelona, but the Spanish coach has yet to hold negotiations to extend the contract.
Spanish media reports said Barcelona’s Juan Laporta, the candidate for president, had shown interest in appointing Arteta to replace the current coach, Ronald Koeman, if he wins the elections.
Arteta was playing at Barcelona’s academy before moving to the Rangers in 2002 without playing for the first team of the Spanish giants.
“There will always be speculation when there are elections in Barcelona, this is a big team,” Arteta told a news conference on Wednesday.
“I certainly grew up there as a player and there will be constantly speculation, but my focus is completely on my job, which I am currently doing, as we have to do a lot and I really enjoy it,” he added.
“What I can say is that I feel very privileged to train this club, and I am very happy.”
Arteta, who won the FA Cup at the end of his first season with Arsenal, is linked to a contract for an additional two years after the end of this season.
In response to a question about starting negotiations to extend the contract, Arteta said, “No, we are in the middle of the season. We still have a lot of play and at this time this matter is not a priority.”
Arsenal are ranked tenth in the Premier League and will play 15th-place Burnley next Saturday.
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