Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta gave little away when responding to links to Sergio Aguero, a player he knows intimately from his time coaching at Man City.
The Man City superstar’s career at the Etihad will come to a close this summer. The news was delivered via an official statement from the club last week. Soon after, the Argentine paid an emotional tribute to the club where he has become a legend.
Injuries have hampered the 32-year-old’s career this season, limiting him to just 14 appearances across all competitions.
But when fit, the lethal marksman remains one of the deadliest strikers in world football.
Attention has now turned to what path his journey will next take.
A stay in English football cannot be ruled out, with a recent report listing Chelsea and Man Utd as potential suitors.
Outspoken pundit Paul Merson touted Arsenal as the ideal destination, and judging from Arteta’s latest comments, the Spaniard certainly agrees.
“Anybody that has been close to Sergio would say the same thing.
“First of all anybody that has been close to Sergio would say the same thing.
“I think he’s probably been one of the main three faces that has lifted that project.
“You need some leadership, you need some quality, you need players to create moments to start to build a project like they did.
“Sergio is probably the biggest face on that project. It’s not only the way he plays, his charisma, the way he plays, he’s loved by everybody at that club.
“It’s sad to see someone leaving like him. What he’s done he’ll be up there in history.”
Arsenal Man Utd circling over Everton record-breaker
Meanwhile, Everton face a battle to keep hold of young full-back Thierry Small, as reports suggest there is interest from the likes of Manchester United and Arsenal.
Small became Everton’s youngest ever player when he made his senior debut as a 16-year-old in January. He wasn’t on the pitch for long but is expected to have a bright future. However, that may lie away from Merseyside.
According to the Daily Express, Arsenal and Man Utd are among the teams following Small. The left-back is yet to agree professional terms with Everton.
There have been limited options for progression since his debut a few months ago. To break into the first team, he would have to overtake Niels Nkounkou, who is currently back-up to Lucas Digne, in the pecking order.
He may have the opportunity to fulfil his potential elsewhere. It is claimed that, alongside Man Utd and Arsenal, there is also interest from Brighton and Brentford.
Small would even be willing to turn down United or Arsenal if he found that they too would not be able to guarantee him what he requires for his development.
Bayern Munich could also try to lure him to Germany, a country that has given several young players a platform in recent years. However, regulations arising from Brexit would make that deal almost impossible.