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Arteta on Manchester City ban: I want best for my ex-boss Guardiola

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Arteta 'not afraid' to make tough decisions at Arsenal (1:35)

Craig Burley says Arsenal have chosen a strong direction by allowing Mikel Arteta to run things his way. (1:35)

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta expressed symapthy for his mentor Pep Guardiola amid the shocking news that Manchester City will be banned two seasons from European competition.

Arteta worked for Guardiola at City as his assistant for from 2016-19 before taking over at Arsenal in January. Arteta addded that he'd been in touch with his former boss following last week's announcement.

"I just want the best for City. The admiration and love that I have for Pep, the players and staff, I just want the best for them. I know how hard they work and hopefully a positive thing can come for them."

While Manchester City stated they will fight the ban in the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the club's potential exclusion from Champions League would mean the fifth-place team would take their spot.

While Arsenal sit in 10th place and remain aways from a top-four spot, Arteta said he'll keep his side's focus on their tasks at hand.

"I don't think about it, I just want the best for Manchester City because that's the way I feel and now I have to do not the best, the very, very best for Arsenal to try and maximise everything we have here to bring the club as high as possible again."

Tottenham Hotspur manager Jose Mourinho, a notable rival of Guardiola from their epic La Liga battles, also said he wasn't going to start analysing the table and what it would mean for Spurs. The north London side beat Aston Villa on Sunday to reach fifth place.

"My view is that I didn't lose one single minute analysing what UEFA and FIFA, they have to analyse. If I go into that, I have to ask if the [Spurs side] that finished second in 2018 is going to be champions, yes or no? That would be interesting but joking apart, I just wait calmly. Fourth or fifth, I just think about doing the best we can," Mourinho said after the win.

"The more points we can get the better position we can get," he added. "At the end of the season we'll see where we are. If we are sixth or seventh then it doesn't matter if the fifth goes to Champions League.

"So when we speak about the fifth spot, I think for sure Wolves, Sheffield United, Man United, Arsenal, Everton, everyone looks to the table and week after week they say we can do it and they can. It's going to be very hard."