When Bernardo Silva scored for Manchester City against Arsenal on Sunday, Pep Guardiola turned to Mikel Arteta and threw his arms around his second-in-command.
Rodolfo Borrell, another coach given greater responsibility this season, joined in the celebrations, putting his arm around Arteta and slapping him on the back.
The images suggested Arteta had played a significant role in City’s second goal, one which put the game out of Arsenal’s reach.
And it has now emerged that Arteta was indeed instrumental in the Premier League champions kicking off their title defence with a victory.
“Do you remember from Sunday’s game, after the second goal, Pep’s hug with Mikel?” Marti Perarnau, who wrote two books on Guardiola’s three-year spell in charge at Bayern Munich, said on the 93:20 Podcast.
“That was because Mikel said to Mendy, ‘Don’t make a high cross when you get to the end line, make a cut-back along the floor,’ and after that Bernardo scored the goal.
“He [also] talked with Mendy and Sterling to try to make a double pass before the last cut-back.”