Manchester City will not stand in the way of Mikel Arteta if Arsenal wanted to appoint him as their next manager, according to reports.

Arteta has been strongly linked with the Arsenal job as pressure continues to mount on head coach Unai Emery following a disappointing recent run of results.

City’s assistant manager appeared to be a front runner to land the role following Arsene Wenger’s departure in the summer of 2018 before the club opted to hire Emery.

Many fans have welcomed the idea of the former Gunners midfielder taking the hot seat at the Emirates Stadium given his connections with the club and experience of working alongside one of the best in the business in Pep Guardiola at Man City.

READ MORE: What Alex Lacazette has said about Unai Emery’s Arsenal future and poor results

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The 37-year-old is keen to make the step up to management at some point and there has been some suggestions he could succeed Guardiola at the Eithad when the current manager’s contract expires in two years.

But with Arsenal having won just six of their last 19 Premier League games under Emery and already slipping eight points behind the top four places this season, the club’s hierarchy could be forced into a change if the poor performances persist.

The Spaniard was on the shortlist of candidates to replace Wenger before Emery took over, so it’s likely he would still be in the running should the opportunity arise once again.

READ MORE: Arsenal board back Unai Emery and say he’s ‘the right man for the job’

‘Mikel still has a lot of affection for Arsenal’

A source at Manchester City told The Sun: “Mikel loves working at City and learning from the best manager in the world in Pep.

“Everyone knows he wants to be his own man one day, though.

“Mikel still has a lot of affection for Arsenal from his playing days there.

“He knows City would never dream of standing in the way of his ambitions if an attractive offer came from a top club.

“That’s not how they work, nor Pep. They want to empower people and see them get on.

“It was the same with Patrick Vieira when he was behind the scenes at City before wanting to manage at New York City FC.”

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The likelihood that Arteta would implement an attractive, attacking style of play at the club once again appeals to fans who are unhappy with the current Arsenal boss.

More than 1,300 supporters responded to a survey carried out by on who they would like to see as the next manager and Arteta topped the poll with more than a third of the votes.

Former Juventus boss Max Allegri and Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers were the next most popular choices.

Arteta is currently the fourth favourite with the bookies to be Arsenal’s next manager at 8/1, behind Jose Mourinho, Luis Enrique and Freddie Ljungberg.

READ MORE: Where Arsenal would finish in the Premier League based on their current form

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