Premier League - In profile: Nacho Monreal

We asked Jorge Ordas from our Spanish office to fill us in on Arsenal's deadline day signing, Nacho Monreal.

Premier League - In profile: Nacho Monreal

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Nacho Monreal (AFP)

The left-back joined Arsenal from Malaga for a fee of £8.5 million and is expected to make his debut for the club against Stoke on Saturday.

Monreal is a full Spain international and has impressed in La Liga, but he is not the most famous of the country's many glittering talents.

For more information, we asked our Madrid office to give us the low-down on the 26-year-old.

What kind of player is he?

As you know, he plays as a left full-back. He’s a ‘modern’ left full-back because he loves to attack with the team. His left foot is very, very good so he can put balls in the box. Don’t expect to have signed a scorer from defence though as he has never scored more than one goal per season.

What qualities will he bring to Arsenal and England?

It will be a very beautiful ‘fight’ between Monreal and Kieran Gibbs, who is younger and has more Champions League experience. Gibbs also knows the Premier League but he has not been playing very well for some months.

On the other hand, Monreal has experience as a very important player for Osasuna and also Malaga. He has played in the UEFA Cup and also the Champions League this year, but with a more important role in the team. In my opinion, Monreal is a more consistent player but he will have to play very well to be in the starting XI. The roles of Mikel Arteta and Santi Cazorla (who Monreal played with at Malaga) will be important in making the adaptation better for him.

Is he a strong contender for the Spanish national team?

Nowadays it is very difficult to reach the Spanish national team because there are so many very good players, but he has been selected sometimes and he has played for La Roja. Luckily for him, left-back is probably the position where there are the least good Spanish players so this transfer, and the experience he will have in England, will be very interesting for him.

How have the Spanish press reacted to the deal?

It was a big surprise because nobody has written about this transfer. In London, he will be very close to one of his best friends: Chelsea's Cesar Azpilicueta. They played together at Osasuna for years. We were also surprised because he signed for Malaga (our version of Manchester City in Spain) in a ‘big project', and one year and six months later he has left for Arsenal.

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