Nacho Monreal decided to return to Spain after six and a half years in England, signing a two-year contract with Real Sociedad in August 2019. The Spaniard has been open about wanting to play in LaLiga Santander again, but after coming to the club in May 2018 Unai Emery made it clear that he didn’t want to lose his defender. This only postponed Monreal’s decision to return to his home country and his family. He reveals that once his mind was made up he started following Real and wanted them to win.
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.
Reiterating what other managers have said before about the Premier League transfer window finishing two weeks before the rest of Europe’s, Unai Emery says it is unfortunate and not normal, because the clubs are in a position to lose their players in the last minute without the possibility of getting suitable replacements.
Asked about the rumoured departure of left-back Nacho Monreal, the Arsenal boss candidly replies that it looks like his compatriot will be leaving Emirates Stadium before the European transfer window closes in seven days’ time.
According to the Daily Star, Arsenal’s reported transfer target Nicolas Tagliafico has decided to remain at Champions League semi-finalists Ajax for another season.
The Argentinian international had previously been linked with a move to north London. However, it seems he is happy in the Dutch capital, for now anyway.
Gunners need a left-back this summer
Arsenal are on the lookout for a new left-back with Nacho Monreal expected to exit as a free agent this summer. Sead Kolasinac has played in the position on a regular basis for the Gunners, but the former Schalke star is better suited to play as a wing-back.
Reported Arsenal target Ajax’s Nicolas Tagliafico is set to leave the Dutch club. The 26-year-old Argentinian international has risen to prominence in the last few seasons and looks set for a new challenge next season.
His agent has confirmed Tagliafico is likely to move on
The Metro quoted the player’s agent Ricardo Schlieper as saying ‘Ajax made an offer, but it wasn’t accepted because it’s the right time to take a leap,’
‘Let’s see what happens in the market. ‘There has been no talk of numbers with Ajax, but they will ask for a significant amount – I think it will be more than €20million [£17m].’
It’s never a smart idea to write off players prior to them actually retiring, because let’s face it, we’ve all been proven wrong in one way or another over the years. Whether it be due to a late career resurgence or a veteran player suddenly losing his mojo, you truly never know what is waiting around the next corner. So, with that in mind, we want to try and be a little bit conservative when it comes to discussing the Nacho Monreal dilemma.
Birthdays in football are an interesting thing, because it seems like fans don’t put anywhere near as much stock or attention into what every birthday ‘means’ for a player as they should. Every single time that they turn one year older, it could mean something entirely different for the trajectory of their career. You could go from being in your mid 20s to your late 20s in the blink of an eye, and despite how much the game gets analysed and picked apart in the present day, a lot of fans don’t seem to care. It’s interesting.
Arsenal have beaten Burnley by 3-1 in the 18th round of the 2018/19 Premier League season, courtesy of goals from Pierre-Emerick Auubameyang (14′, 48′), and Alex Iwobi (90′). The solitary strike for the visitors was the work of Ashley Barnes (63′). The Gunners are still in fifth place, but now they’ve equaled Chelsea’s point tally as the Blues suffered defeat at home to Leicester City.
But the result aside for a moment, there were some interesting things to take from this game. Let’s take a look.
Arsenal face a trip to struggling Southampton later today and it is a game on paper that the Gunners should comfortably win. The home sides form and confidence are currently very poor, but there are some issues that suggest this could be a banana skin of a match.
The new boss bounce
One of those issues is the prospect of the Saints prospects improving because of the appointment of new boss Ralph Hasenhuttl. The Austrian has had just one game in charge of the team from the south coast, a 1-0 defeat at Cardiff.
On Sunday afternoon, Arsenal visit Southampton’s St Mary’s in the Premier League, as the Gunners look to maintain their long unbeaten run.
Southampton have struggled for wins this season and the Saints are currently 19th place in the table. The Saints have failed to win in 12 Premier League outings. However, new boss Ralph Hasenhuttl is highly-rated and is expected to improve the home sides fortunes. Sunday’s game will be the Austrian’s first home match in charge of his new team.