Nacho Monreal deserves to extend his stay at Arsenal beyond this season, according to boss Unai Emery. Spain international Monreal has started three Premier League matches under Emery, crucially scoring the equaliser to set up a maiden Arsenal win for the former Paris Saint-Germain coach as West Ham were beaten 3-1 last month. The 32-year-old confirmed this week that he is in talks with the Emirates Stadium hierarchy and Emery is keen to keep his countryman aboard.
Monreal's contract due to expire next summer
"First, I knew Nacho Monreal in Spain when he was playing in Osasuna and in Malaga," he told a news conference ahead of Saturday's trip to Newcastle United. "After six years here, I came and I know him as a new Nacho Monreal. After two weeks, after two months and now, I can say that I am very happy with him because he is 32 years old but I think physically, with his performances with us in matches, he is playing with a very good level. The rest of that, for me, is very important. I think we need to find a new contract with him to stay with the Arsenal team."
European campaign starts next week
Following defeats against Manchester City and Chelsea to start the season, Arsenal made it back-to-back wins by seeing off West Ham and then Cardiff City 3-2 before the international break. Emery now hopes to build some momentum ahead of a busy few weeks, with the Gunners' Europa League campaign getting underway against Vorskla next Thursday.
"Our aim away at Newcastle on Saturday is to keep improving things and continue to create our idea, build up our spirit on the pitch individually and collectively, and it is clear this process is one process," Emery added. "Saturday is another step where we can do it. It will be difficult, but I want to continue [to show] our personality on the pitch, impose this personality on the opposition and to find the win."