Posts Tagged ‘Nacho Monreal’


Arsenal Vs Everton team news – Fabianski doubt, Rosicky and Mertesacker return

By Stefano on April 15th, 2013

Looks like Arsene Wenger has some interesting decisions to make for tomorrow night’s crucial home game with Everton

1 Who to play in goal? Apparently Lukasz Fabianski took a kick to the ribs during the victory over Norwich and is a major doubt for tomorrow. Mannone has been on the bench recently and had a good run earlier in the season, but might it now be the time to recall the out of sorts Wojciech Szczesny?

2 Who to play in central defence? – Thomas Vermaelen had a reasonable game against Norwich but Wenger clearly sees his strongest pairing as Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny, so with the German back after suspension Arsenal’s Belgian captain could be warming the bench again.

3 Who to play at left back? - Gibbs played well against Norwich, though admittedly his crossing was little off. Maybe Nacho Monreal will get the nod tomorrow.

4 How do you accommodate Tomas Rosicky? - The Czech player is available and deserves to be in the side after his superb recent form for the Gunners. But does that mean Wenger will drop Wilshere?

5 Is there room for Podolski and Walcott? Arsenal looked a much stronger team when the pair come on in the second half on Saturday. Walcott may replace Gervinho, but where does that leave Podolski?


Kieran Gibbs is back in training- is he Arsenal’s first choice left back?

By Stefano on March 6th, 2013

Some good news for Arsene Wenger and Arsenal fans. The club’s English left back Kieran Gibbs is back in training and could feature in both The Champions League and The Premiership soon.

The jury is still out on the former. The game against Bayern next week may come too soon for the player which would be bad news for the team. At The Emirates Bayern ruthlessly exploited Arsenal’s right flank and the makeshift left back Thomas Vermaelen. A fit Gibbs would be a much better option.

Failing that Gibbs could be ready to play in the Premiership against Swansea on March 16th.

But will he start the game? Wenger’s winter signing Nacho Monreal has overall had a good start to his English career. In many games he has looked solid at the back and powerful going forward. He even provided an assist for Santi Cazorla in the recent 2–1 victory over Aston Villa.

However he had a poor game against Spurs and some pundits blamed him for the second Lennon goal as he seemed to stand helplessly still as the Spurs’ player broke through the Arsenal high line.

Most Gunners fans seemed to like what they have seen of the player so far, but I wonder if a full fit Gibbs, who was excellent in the first part of the season and who has a significantly longer relationship with the rest of the defence to draw on, should start against Swansea. After that it could all be down to who starts and how well they play – or in Gibbs’case how long he stays injury-free.


Are Arsenal going to hit Malaga for yet another player?

By Stefano on March 4th, 2013

Bit of an interesting one this which I guess is more speculation than hard fact for now.

But  HITC is suggesting that Arsene Wenger is considering his campaign to reunite the Malaga team from last year at The Emirates by signing 29 year old French defensive midfielder Jeremy Toulalan.

Malaga are currently one of the hottest teams in Spain. They are fourth in La Liga and still in the Champions League. However mounting financial troubles mean that they have had to sell off several off their players and Arsenal have already profited with a great deal for Cazorla and a potentially good one for Monreal too.

Toulalan would be a good fit for the Gunners. He has played with Sagna and Diaby in the French national side and obviously knows Monreal and Cazorla’s game very well.

He is also strong in the tackle and has good vision for a largely defensively minded player.

He has said he is leaving Malaga in the summer and Atlético Madrid are interested in his services. Newcastle have been monitoring him too as they are apparently light on French players (not).

Arsenal fans will be hoping for a higher profile signing like a Capoue, but if that Champions League place doesn’t happen then Toulalan could be a useful and cheaper alternative.


Arsenal update: Confirmed Nacho Monreal signs for £8.3 million

By Stefano on January 31st, 2013

Finally it is official. Arsenal have signed a player in the transfer window.

It might not have been the players that the fans hoped for but Nacho Monreal is clearly a quality signing. The club have apparently been tracking the player for a while and according to Arsenal insiders it was likely they were going to complete the move in the summer.

However the injury to Kieran Gibbs and the disastrous form of Andre Santos meant that club agreed the deal earlier than they had planned.

Monreal, who is a Spanish international, comes from Malaga where his team mate up until last summer was one Santi Cazorla.

Monreal is however cup tied in the Champions League, so it will be either Santos or Vermaelen playing against Bayern Munich.

Arsène Wenger said: “We are delighted that Nacho Monreal has agreed to join us. We have been monitoring him for some time now and are really pleased that we’ve been able to agree this move today. Monreal is a strong left-sided defender with good experience at both club and international level. He is a technically gifted player, a good crosser in the final third and strong in the air. Monreal will add quality to our squad and of course, to our defensive unit. We all look forward to him playing for us.”

Here’s the news from the club site

Arsenal Football Club is delighted to announce that Spanish international defender Nacho Monreal has agreed to join the Gunners on a long-term contract for an undisclosed fee.

Monreal (26), who will join Arsenal from Spanish La Liga side Malaga, is predominantly a left full-back and has represented his country Spain at youth level, Under-21s and has made nine appearances for the national team.

Full name Ignacio Monreal Eraso, but known as ‘Nacho’, the defender started his career with his hometown club Osasuna, where he progressed through the youth ranks to become a regular in the first team, making 127 appearances for the La Liga side. During that time he was an integral part of the team which reached the Europa League Semi-Final in 2007.

Monreal’s performances for Osasuna earned him recognition on the international stage, firstly with the Spanish under-21s, where he notably started all his country’s matches in the 2009 Under-21 European Championships, and later became a full international, making his debut for Spain in a friendly win over Macedonia in August 2009.

In June 2011, Monreal signed for Malaga, where he was a regular in the team, alongside Santi Cazorla, which finished fourth in the La Liga, qualifying for the UEFA Champions League for the first time in the club’s history. Monreal made a total of 45 appearances during his time with the southern Spanish side.

Manager Arsène Wenger said: “We are delighted that Nacho Monreal has agreed to join us. We have been monitoring him for some time now and are really pleased that we’ve been able to agree this move today. Monreal is a strong left-sided defender with good experience at both club and international level. He is a technically gifted player, a good crosser in the final third and strong in the air. Monreal will add quality to our squad and of course, to our defensive unit. We all look forward to him playing for us.”

The deal is subject to the completion of formal registration processes.


Arsenal update: No more signings, but Santos could go tomorrow

By Stefano on January 31st, 2013

Unless Barcelona make a sudden about turn on the David Villa bid that’s it from Arsenal tonight. The club are apparently putting the finishing touches to the Nacho Monreal deal which will be announced in the next thirty minutes, but that is the only bit of incoming business the club have done in the window.

There is however an interesting finale which could happen tomorrow and that could be the return of Andre Santos to Turkey.

The Turkish transfer window doesn’t close until tomorrow so there is still plenty of time for Arsene Wenger to offload the player. There are rumours that there have already been conversations with several Turkish clubs.

Beşiktaş are reportedly keen on Santos while his old club Fenerbahçe were linked to the player yesterday.


Arsenal update: Fernando Amorebieta deal off. Nacho Monreal player stats are very impressive.

By Stefano on January 31st, 2013

It looks like there could be great news for Arsenal fans about the signing of Nacho Monreal. But it less encouraging news from Spain about the central defender Fernando Amorebieta from Athletic Bilbao. which broke the story initially is now saying that the player has changed his mind and wants to stay in Spain for now.

The 27 year old Venezuelan (though he was born in Spain) is out of contract the end of the season and is being monitored by a number of Premiership clubs.

As for Monreal the very useful Squawka has just published his stats for the season and they look really good. He has only been on the losing side three times this season – Malaga are currently fourth in La Liga – has won an average 83% of his tackles and 66% of his headed duels. He has been player of the day more time than any other Malaga player this season – not bad going for a left back.

There’s more here


Arsenal update: Nacho Monreal on the plane to London. Deal done? David Villa has gone shopping

By Stefano on January 31st, 2013

Two quick bits of news at 5.30

As we mentioned earlier Nacho Monreal, the Malaga left back, looks like he is about to become an Arsenal player.

Spanish radio stations Radio Marca has reported that the player is on his way to London to finalise the deal. If so well done Arsene, and his erstwhile team mate Santi Cazorla, and fingers crossed he proves a better buy that one Andre Santos.

Goal is saying that the deal is done. It is rumoured to be a four year deal and that Arsenal have paid £10 million for the Spanish international.

Also the Daily Mail has said that David Villa has been spotted shopping in Barcelona this afternoon. Maybe he was buying his pals leaving presents?


Arsenal update: Odds on Villa coming shorten, news on left backs, Arshavin exit, and a centre back

By Stefano on January 31st, 2013

Well it looked at one point as if the big Arsenal story would be the signings of David Villa and Mohammed Diame.

A number of sources are suggesting that Arsenal are still talking to Barcelona about Villa.  Also agent Sky Andrew, who has reasonably close links with the club, has told Talk Sport to expect a few big surprises later in the day.

Interestingly at the time of writing he is 11/8 here to sign – and those odds have shortened significantly from 100-30 which they were a few hours ago. Mind you they are 2-1 for him joining Man City.

Don’t hold your breath though.

As for a left back – well take your pick. Malaga’s Nacho Monreal has been mentioned as has Valenciennes’ Gaetan Bong. Weirdly both have played alongside current Arsenal team members. Maybe Arsene had a word after the Liverpool game and asked who the team rated?

One other possible target is Marseille defender Nicolas N’Koulou. Goal thinks that Arsene might sign him and choose to play Thomas Vermaelen at left back.

Finally Russian paper Izvestia is suggesting that Harry Redknapp has tabled a take it or leave it offer with Andrei Arshavin. The player, who is out of contract at Arsenal at the end of the season could join QPR on a deal based on the number of games he plays.


Arsenal update: Rumours of a move for Malaga’s Nacho Monreal

By Stefano on January 31st, 2013

The new left back rumours are coming thick and fast now. is reporting that the latest left back to be linked is Malaga’s Nacho Monreal.

There’s no link to any source but again this one might just have legs.

Nacho Monreal is a 26 year old who has been a regular in the Malaga team since 2011. He joined the side when money was no problem – signing on from Osasuna for 6 million Euros.

These days Malaga have cash issues which is one of the reasons why Arsenal were able to sign Santi Cazorla from the team in the summer.

The pacey left back is more defensively minded than Kieran Gibbs and would certainly rival him for first choice left back.

The down side for Wenger is that the player has been consistently linked with other clubs – including Man United – but has so far chosen to stay in Spain.

With several players familiar with another target Valenciennes’ Gaetan Bong, it sounds like Arsene has been asking his squad members who they would most like to play again with…

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