‘Arteta always destined to be a manager’

Mikel Arteta was always destined to go into management, according to former Arsenal team-mate Kieran Gibbs.

Gibbs, who played alongside Arteta at the Emirates between 2011 and 2016, believes the Spaniard always had “something extra” that made him stand out, not just as a player, but as a future coach as well.

Arteta replaced Unai Emery as Arsenal boss in December 2019, winning the FA Cup in his first year in charge before finishing eighth in the table last season.

“Anyone who played with Mikel throughout his career will tell you he was destined to be a manager,” Gibbs told Sky Sports News.

“He’s got something extra you can’t explain, that extra love for the game. He lives and breathes it.

“He was always looking to analyse the game, study it and it’s no surprise he’s gone into management.

“When he arrived at Arsenal he was coming to the end of his career and you noticed he was quickly becoming the mediator between the players and the coaches more and more.”

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Kieran Gibbs recently invested in allplants, who deliver plant-based food direct to people’s homes, as part of a record-breaking GBP38m funding round.

The move demonstrates the growth of ‘flexitarian’ eating habits among athletes and the public for health and environmental reasons.

Plant-based food is good for the climate, with one meat-free day per week bringing the same carbon saving as not driving for a month and is favoured by players like Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero for its benefits to performance.

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