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Arteta: Barcelona was ´complicated´

Arsenal midfielder Mikel Arteta says he left Barcelona early in his career because he was behind Pep Guardiola and Xavi in the pecking order.


Arteta left Camp Nou as a 17-year-old after receiving a call from Paris Saint-Germain.

He spent two years in France, before enjoying a spell with Rangers in the Scottish Premier League and a return to Spain with Real Sociedad.

Arteta told AS: “I was playing in Barcelona and Guardiola and Xavi were ahead of me. It was a complicated situation.

“By that time I was 17 and Luis Fernandez called me from PSG to sign me. The next day I was already flying to Paris.”

The 30-year-old moved to Everton in 2005 and fell in love with the English game, becoming one of the Premier League’s most consistent performers over the next seven years.

“Premier League and La Liga are different between them. Each one has its good and bad things,” Arteta said.

“An unquestionable Premier League advantage is the great atmosphere you live in every single game, no matter who you are playing against.”

Sat 10 November, 2012
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