Wenger more or less confirms new Monreal deal


At the weekend we brought you the story via Radio Marca that Nacho Monreal had signed a new deal with the club.

At his press conference today, the Arsenal manager more or less confirmed it but said the deal wasn’t fully complete just yet.

Asked about the reports, he said, “We’ll announce that at some stage, when it’s finished. It’s not over the line completely but we’re not far.”

Which is obviously good news as he’s developed into one of the finest left-backs in Europe, something that Wenger acknowledged when asked why the club were handing a 3 year extension to a player not far away from 30.

“The regularity of his performances, the fact that he has improved every year since he has arrived,” he said.

“He’s not necessarily my first-choice left back. He plays more than Kieran Gibbs at the moment, but I think I am a bit spoiled there.

“Gibbs has come back and he has shown again on Saturday a very, very strong level. That makes my decisions at that level very difficult. But overall, Nacho Monreal has been absolutely outstanding.”

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  1. Monreal certainly has some good years left, he has never relied on his speed as he is not the speedster Gibbs and before him Clichy are/were, but rather is very intelligent with his play and positioning. Really knows when to hold back a bit and support the play vs bombing forward too often and getting caught up field. He is great in possession and quite a capable dribbler and crosser. Really understands too Sanchez’s tendencies and preferences when he plays in front of him as well as Ozil who likes to drift wide left. The most impressive thing to me about Monreal is the consistency of his performances, you always know what you will get from him.

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    • @ Mark,

      Good points made.

      I also feel that his spell at centre half last season helped make him a better all round defender too, and we’re seeing that in the quality of his performances.

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  2. A propos of nothing, do we know if we get a sell-on fee for Afobe? How does he go from 2m to 10m in 12 months, especially considering the brilliant loan spell at MK Dons? He’ll be hungry to prove us wrong that’s for sure, but still wish him the best of luck.

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  3. Not superstitious or anything but Nacho made most of us forget the minor ‘curse’ of jersey number 18. Wonderful season from him.

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    • Gibbs doesnt strike me as the type to have/show ambition and move somewhere else to play more. He looks like he is happy where he is.

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  4. When Gibbs is on it he is excellent, unfortunately he’s too hit and miss. Nacho is Mr Dependable. Not the most dazzling full back around, but consistently gets the job done with no frills. Shades of Nigel Winterburn for me. Does exactly what it says on the tin.

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    • Gibbs is a potential 8.5/10 with a few 4/10s thrown in for good measure, while Nacho is a consistent 7.5/10.

      I know which one I’d want to rely on in a title chase that’s for sure!

      However I also do think there’s no better ‘reserve’ left back in the league when you want someone to come on and shore up a game while still offering a heck of a counter attacking threat.

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    • Good point. Gibbs is more unreliable, but I think he’ll pick up the reliability the older he gets and challenge Monreal more and more for a starting berth next season.

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  5. Monreal has been underrated both by our fans and media. If he had been English he would’ve been appreciated more considering the extent they’ve gone with Luke Shaw who has been average for most part.

    The thing that pleases me most is that our worst phase of the season is over. A period where our squad was really stretched and to our credit we’ve done well. Players slowly coming back from injuries will be fresh and full of vigour. It will give our season a timely push. COYG

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  6. More Nacho plz…three more years worth apparently! I rate the guy obviously.

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  7. Monreal is first choice for sure, but the boss did a nice bit of PR there to make sure Gibbs feels the love as well.

    I’ve quite liked watching Gibbs come on as a left-winger when we’re beating the other team.

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    • Yes he has, but not very recently (latest call-up 2013). Given Azpilicueta’s bad form and Bernat’s problems getting minutes at Bayern, he might be on his way to the Euros.

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  8. For me has taken the mantle of consistency since Sagna left. Occassionaly he catches the eye but for the most part he just does his job and does it well, been a long while since we’ve had this kind of stability at left back.

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  9. Our left back position is in good hands(and feet) for the foreseeable future. we gooners are happy to have Senor Ignacio monreal and gentle Gibbs manning the left fort .

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  10. Bloody good Left back. Not a bad piece of business in January for 8m quid.

    The media have invented their own myth again about Wenger not willing to spend in January.

    What he said which is perfectly legit was that it was more difficult to find value in January.

    That did not mean he could not find it nor that he was allergic to doing what was necessary.

    Aside from Monreal, he also brought in the equally good value Gabriel.

    Even Arsharvin for 15m was worth it for a season or so, not just with the four goals against Liverpool but as the media wouldn’t remember (or conveniently forget) the winner against Barca.

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  11. Nacho plays with real fire and passion. Big Gibbs fan but wish he’d play with a bit of anger and drive. Bit too nice in my book!

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