Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has denied rumors linking him to FC Barcelona. The Spaniard called it 'fake news' and claimed that he was very upset after hearing these false rumors gain popularity on the internet.
"No, it's totally fake news. What you read yesterday, I don't know where it comes from. It's totally false. I'm really upset about this."
Reporters raised this question in a pre-match interview before Arsenal vs Nottingham Forest. Considering Mikel Arteta's status at Arsenal and also his contract, which extends till 2025, the San Sebastián native will be a hard nut to crack if Barcelona considers him as a viable option.
Mikel also added that the media should be careful while talking about personal things.
"I couldn't believe it. I don't know where it comes from. I think we have to be very careful when we talk about personal things, especially that. I'm in the right place."
The media also asked the Arsenal gaffer as to why he hasn't signed a contract renewal yet, and will he do it in order to end the rumors?
"I have a strong relationship with the board of directors. Things come naturally. We have always done it that way and we have done it very well."
Arteta further explained the reason for his reactions.
"First of all, I am very cautious when I speak publicly about my personal things. Secondly, because I don't think anyone deserves to hear news like that. I have always said the opposite. That's why I feel upset."
According to the talks, Mikel Arteta's commitment towards Arsenal is evident. He also said that there is a lot of work left to do at the club.
"There is a lot to do here and we all share that ambition. It is clear that we want more, we are not satisfied and the club wants another push to reach another goal."
If Barça has Mikel on the list as a potential candidate to replace Xavi, then the man himself has indirectly rejected their offer publicly. Even though Mikel has said so himself, we can't be certain. Many personalities in football have turned away from their words in the past.