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Celtic's Brendan Rodgers plays down speculation about Arsenal job

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers has played down the suggestion he could take over at Arsenal if Arsene Wenger decides to step down this summer.

Rodgers has already led Celtic to the Scottish Premiership title in his first season in charge, putting himself back in demand after being fired by Liverpool in 2015.

But when asked in an interview with talkSPORT about being mentioned as a possible successor to Wenger, Rodgers said he had no immediate plans to return to the Premier League.

"One day I will look to go back [to the Premier League]. I wouldn't rule out going abroad as well. But at this moment in time my only focus is for Celtic," Rodgers said. "I love it here, I love the life up here and I want to continue to build the club and continue with the success.

"Maybe a few years ago I was super-ambitious ... I still am ambitious but being at Celtic makes you reassess. You have to look at what you have got as well.

"As a Celtic supporter, I know what they want and I want to try and give them as much as I possibly can and when I do leave here, leave a legacy that allows for the next guy to come in and hopefully take it on again."

Celtic's unveiling of Brendan Rodgers
Brendan Rodgers took over at Celtic in May 2016.

Wenger's contract expires after this season and Arsenal CEO Ivan Gazidis reiterated this weekend that no decision about his future has been made yet.

Wenger has hinted he wants to stay for another two years, while a number of fans are calling for him to step down after a disappointing run of results.

Rodgers, whose side have won 28 of their 30 Scottish Premiership games this season, told Sky Sports that Celtic could compete in the Premier League.

"Could we play in the Premier League? Yes, we could," he said. "I have absolutely no doubt about it because we've got the Celtic factor. We have 60,000 every other week. Without the money alone, this team would compete in the Premier League.

"We took a Swansea team who won the Championship into the Premier League and we finished 11th but for us and what we were trying to do that was very, very good.

"But this is Celtic. This is one of the great iconic clubs in the world so there is no doubt that with this group we could go in [there and compete].

"Imagine the backing then. Celtic would be one of the minimum top four, top six clubs in the English Premier League and then that puts you on a different level altogether."

Mattias is ESPN FC's Arsenal correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @MattiasKaren.


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