Player profile - Nacho Monreal
Player profile - Nacho Monreal

Nacho Monreal

Nacho Monreal Profile

Born February 26, 1986
Pamplona, Spain
Position: Defender
Squad Number: 17
Previous Club(s) Osasuna, Malaga
Arsenal Debut February 02, 2013

Spanish left back Nacho Monreal enjoyed a promising first few months at Arsenal after arriving on transfer deadline day in January 2013.

He was thrust into action just two days after putting pen to paper, producing a nerveless performance as the Gunners defeated Stoke 1-0 on February 2. He continued to impress, making a fine overlapping run to provide an assist for Santi Cazorla’s winner against Aston Villa three weeks later – and opened his goalscoring account with a vital strike at Swansea in March. Competing with Kieran Gibbs for the left-sided defensive role, he adapted smoothly to the rigours of the Premier League and made an impact with his clever positioning, flawless technique and ability to combine with those further forward.

Nacho (full name Ignacio Monreal Eraso) arrived from Malaga, for whom he had featured in the 2012/13 Champions League. He had helped them to fourth place in La Liga the previous season, his first with the Andalusian club. Before that, he represented hometown side Osasuna, for whom he made 127 appearances – helping them to a Europa League semi-final in 2006/07.

Previously a regular in Spain’s Under-21 side, he made his full debut against Macedonia in August 2009 and now battles with Barcelona’s Jordi Alba for the left back spot. He provided a superb assist for Pedro Rodriguez’s winner in the World Cup qualifier against France in March, and also appeared in the Confederations Cup during the summer of 2013.

Nacho Monreal's Arsenal Career

  Prem Lge Europe FA Cup Lge Cup Total
Season Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
2012-2013 9 + 1 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 10 + 1 1
2013-2014 11 + 10 0 2 + 6 0 3 0 2 0 18 + 16 0
Total 20 + 11 1 2 + 6 0 4 0 2 0 28 + 17 1

My Year

  • 2013/14
  • 2012/13


A back injury interrupted Nacho's pre-season and kept him out of the squad for the Aston Villa game. However, the Spaniard returned to the bench for Arsenal's trip to Turkey and replaced Theo Walcott in the closing minutes. Monreal replaced Olivier Giroud with just under 20 minutes to go against Fulham and also played a full game in the return leg against Fenerbache.


Nacho featured in every game in September but his only start came in the Capital One Cup win against West Brom. The Spanish full-back converted the decisive spot-kick in that tie to send Arsenal through to the fourth round where they will play Chelsea.


Nacho made three appearances for the Gunners in October. The Spanish left-back came on as a substitute in the wins over Napoli and Crystal Palace, and he finished the month by playing 90 minutes in the defeat against Chelsea. "In truth it is a tough moment for me because the manager is choosing Kieran over me," Nacho told Arsenal Player. "But to be honest he is playing very well. All of the games that he’s played in he has done well, the team is on a good run, and I don’t see things changing in the short-term. "There is nothing I can do but to keep training, do the best I can so that when I do get the nod from the manager, I can take advantage of my chance and show him that he can count on me."


Nacho made one start and four more appearances from the bench in November. The Spaniard put in a faultless display at left-back in the 2-0 win over Marseille. "He's a top-class player," said fellow left-back Kieran Gibbs. "He plays for his national team so I'm aware of his qualities and the more that he puts me under pressure, it makes me perform. "I know that he's there and ready to step in. There's competition all over the pitch, there's competition everywhere in football and in life. I think the most important thing is to enjoy that, as long as it helps the Club then we're both happy."


Nacho made three appearances for the first team in December. The Spanish left-back filled in for Kieran Gibbs in the Premier League games against Hull City and Manchester City and made a late substitute's appearance against Napoli.


Nacho started five of Arsenal's six games in January. The Spaniard produced some impressive performances in the wins over Cardiff City and Tottenham at the start of the month before providing the assist for Jack Wilshere's goal against Aston Villa. Nacho was replaced by Kieran Gibbs for the FA Cup game against Coventry but returned to play 90 minutes in the draw at Southampton.


Spain left back Nacho played in five of Arsenal's six games in February.


A niggling foot injury meant Nacho was restricted to just one appearance in March, which came as a late substitute in the 1-0 win at Tottenham.


Nacho scored his first Arsenal goal in the 2-0 win against Swansea, finding the bottom corner from the edge of the area to give Arsene Wenger’s side the lead. The defender also enjoyed success at international level, assisting Pedro’s winner as Spain won in France.


Nacho started games against West Bromwich Albion and Fulham in April, and came on as a late substitute in the goalless draw against Everton at Emirates Stadium.


Nacho's first season in England culminated with 90 minutes of action in Arsenal's 1-0 win at Queens Park Rangers. The Spanish international was an unused substitute in the Club's final two games of the season.