Sounds like Hleb wishes he stayed at Arsenal...


Former Arsenal and Barcelona midfielder Aleksander Hleb had compiled a compelling managerial performance review, comparing Arsene Wenger and Pep Guardiola.

Hleb seems to favour the Frenchman, claiming that Guardiola’s success at Barcelona was primarily due to the players he had available to him upon his arrival.

"I learned more from Wenger than Guardiola, but Pep is a good coach," he said.

"But Guardiola is not the best coach in the world. He coached the best team in the world, with the best players, and that's why he won."

Hleb spent three years at Arsenal under Wenger until he signed for Barcelona in 2008, where he remained for four years. In that time he made 89 appearances for Arsenal and only 36 for Barcelona.

Under Guardiola the Belarus international was considered somewhat surplus to requirements in a team that boasted the likes of Xavi, Adres Iniesta, and Lionel Messi competing for his preferred position.

Barcelona paid €17miilion for the former Gunner whose comments suggest he may wish he’d stayed at the Emirates.

"It's hard not to win with a team like that. Vilanova will have the greatest success.”

The 31-year-old was loaned back to his former club Stuttgart in 2009 and then made a return to the Premier League the following season on loan to Birmingham City. He nows plays for BATE Borisov.

"The best coaches in the world are Mourinho, Ferguson and Wenger."

Whilst his compliments will likely be well received by the Frenchman, he’s unlikely to earn himself a move back to the Emirates. The current midfield bares little resemblance to the one he left in 2008 with both his former Arsenal teammates Cesc Fabregas and Alex Song following him to Barca, the Gunners now rely on Mikel Arteta and Santi Cazorla at the heart of their team.

Still, I’m sure he’d be welcome back any time at Birmingham.

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch