Arsenal on-loan centre back Ignasi Miquel is vying hard to break into the Leicester starting lineup as he looks to gain some regular first team football.
The 21-year-old is away from the Gunners for the entire season, spending it in the Championship under the watchful eye of Arsene Wenger. He’s managed just a single appearance so far this campaign, with manager Nigel Pearson choosing in-form duo Wes Morgan and Liam Moore in the heart of the Foxes’ defence.
There will come more opportunities for the Spaniard, and when they do he feels he will be ready to impress.
Miquel told the Leicester Mercury:
This is a very important year for me at Leicester. I have to show to myself and Arsenal what I can do and that I can play.
It has been a little frustrating because I haven’t played many games so far, but I have to be realistic. Both the centre-backs, Wes and Liam, have been fantastic so far.
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You want to be in the team, but you have to be conscious of the fact they have been doing great.
So I just have to keep training as hard as I can to convince the manager I am good enough to be starting.
Competition is everywhere. That is football and I just have to prove myself.
I have try to get as much experience and games as I can. Then I must go back to Arsenal and try to get into the team. That will be very tough but that is what I plan to do.
The defender enjoyed a positive pre-season for the Gunners, however he primarily operated as a left back rather than in his favoured central role. The former Barcelona academy starlet has been involved on a number of occasions over the past few seasons at Arsenal especially during the odd injury-ravaged month.
But with three top class defenders ahead of him in the pecking order in north London, playing time was never going to be regular and despite being reserve team captain the experience he will get from (hopefully) regular first team football will be vital for his career.
As it stands he remains on the fringes at the Championship club, but if he continues to work hard coupled with a bit of luck he can break into the lineup and start getting minutes under his belt. He certainly has the ability and as a Spain Under-21 international has the credentials to be a hit with Leichester.
Personally I’ve always had high hopes for the Spaniard. He has the potential to be an excellent centre half and fits perfectly into the Arsenal mold. We’ve seen glimpses of his ability over the past few years, and he was even deployed in the Premier League at the start of the 2011/12 season. Next season he can really push on in north London if the loan spell improves and hopefully get a look in when players suffer from fatigue or injuries, he’s certainly not quite the finished article just yet but he will be a top player in the future.