After six years at Arsenal Football Club, Nacho Monreal has left the Emirates in favour of a switch to Spanish club Real Sociedad. It marks the first time that he will be returning to Spanish football since he left for Arsenal, with his prior location being Malaga.
The 33 year old has actually featured in all three of Arsenal’s Premier League games so far this season and even served as captain during the game against Burnley. Alas, with his replacement Kieran Tierney being set to return to full fitness shortly, it’s quite clear to see that Monreal wasn’t interested in the idea of playing second fiddle. In many ways you can understand his logic, but in others, it’s a shame to see a player that was fairly consistent move on to pastures new.
Nobody can blame his decision making because at the end of the day, he needs to go somewhere that is going to offer him regular first team football. It certainly feels as if the club decided to give him a temporary captaincy as a thank you for his service over the course of the last six years, and if that’s the case, then it’s a nice move on behalf of the club.
End of an era
He made 250 appearances in total and scored 10 goals, but let’s face it, he’s not the kind of guy that is there to score goals. He is the kind of guy that protects at the back and helps to gradually move the ball forward as and when he can. Given that he’s been able to last so long (six years feels like an eternity in the modern era), we’d say that there’s a lot for Arsenal fans to be grateful for. Sure, he wasn’t featured in the best era for the club, but he did manage to help them win three FA Cups and three Community Shields along the way.
Now, it’s all about looking to the future for the club in the left back position. Kieran Tierney is a really strong signing, and the Scot should cause a lot of problems for Premier League sides this season. There’s no guarantee of that, and it’s going to be a big step up from the quality of opposition that he is used to playing against, but you never know unless you try – and that is the gamble they’re taking.
What is your favourite memory from Nacho’s time at Arsenal?