Arsenal sound out former Manchester United player of the year as Mikel Arteta fears key departures

Steven Chicken
Mikel Arteta and Albert Stuivenberg
Mikel Arteta is concerned he may lose Albert Stuivenberg this summer - as well as Carlos Cuesta

Mikel Arteta wants to bring former Manchester United and Real Madrid defender Gabriel Heinze to the Emirates Stadium to serve on his backroom staff.

The Mirror write that the Arsenal gaffer is wary that his current assistants might do an Arteta and look to fly the nest for managerial posts this summer.

Arsenal could lose key personnel to Ajax and Norwich City

Former Manchester United and Wales assistant Albert Stuivenberg is reportedly of interest to Ajax, who are currently under the interim management of John van’t Schip after a disappointing start to the season under Maurice Steijn. Van’t Schip is set to take a technical role upstairs this summer, leaving the head coach role vacant.

Carlos Cuesta is meanwhile said to be on the radar of Championship outfit Norwich City, currently managed by David Wagner.

READ MORE: The 10 costly moments Arsenal and Liverpool will rue now their title bids are officially OVER

The former promotion-winning Huddersfield Town gaffer was under heavy pressure earlier this season after overseeing a run of just one win in nine games, but has been able to turn the ship around and now has Norwich in the play-off places with three games to go and a six-point advantage over seventh-placed Hull City (who have a game in hand).

If either assistant were to depart, Arteta would naturally need to find a replacement, with ESPN Argentina reporting that he has ‘already held talks’ with Heinze about the possibility of coming back to England in that capacity.

Mikel Arteta would not stand in way of assistants’ managerial dreams

Arteta himself left Pep Guardiola’s side at Manchester City to make the move to Arsenal in 2019, and has made clear he would not stand in the way of either of his deputies pursuing that path for themselves.

Speaking about the possibility that either of his number twos (numbers two?) might depart for managerial jobs, Arteta had said: “If that’s their will, you cannot [stop them]. I wouldn’t, no.

“It’s very important, and with the staff as well. I think everybody needs to feel that there is a path, there is a development plan for everyone.

“People don’t want to do the same thing for three, four, five years you know, and there is a way to incentivise people, to inspire other people, and then to explore, because you don’t really know the limit of a person unless you expose him to certain things.

“I think curiosity is a really important quality that we have within our young staff, and that thrives. We all need opportunities. I got an opportunity when I didn’t have any experience in coaching, first of all at Man City and then here, and I’m very grateful for that.”

Heinze spent three years at Old Trafford from 2004-2007, winning the club’s player of the year award in his debut season and winning the Premier League title in his last.