Arsene Wenger has praised the quality of Nacho Monreal this season, and lauded him as one of the club’s most consistent players so far.
The 28-year old has come in for a huge amount of criticism during his time at Arsenal, and for the most part it was not unwarranted. He has shown defensive deficiencies in the past, as well as poor positioning and a tendency to stand off his opponents.
He has come on leaps and bounds this season however, and his superb performance against Stoke City during our 3-0 win highlighted just how far he has come.
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) January 16, 2015
His versatility has been vitally important this campaign, with injuries to key players forcing Wenger to play the Spaniard in central defence. And while he hasn’t looked totally assured at all times, he has performed well for the most part when played out of position.
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The left-back took a nasty elbow to the face during Arsenal’s clash with Stoke, and had to have staples inserted above his eye to stem the bleeding. He was able to carry on however, and put in an excellent shift for the remainder of the game.
He may not be world class, and personally I would still play Kieran Gibbs when he is fully fit, but it’s fantastic to have a second choice who doesn’t leave you constantly in fear.