Unai Emery says he’s been impressed by Nacho Monreal since he arrived at the club and hopes that Arsenal can persuade his Spanish compatriot to sign a new deal.
Monreal last penned a contract at the Emirates in January 2016 and will be a free agent at the end of the season. He confirmed earlier this week that he’s happy in N5 and that negotiations over an extension had already begun.
Asked about the 32-year-old in his pre-Newcastle press conference, Emery said: “First, I knew Nacho Monreal in Spain when he was playing in Osasuna and in Malaga.
“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.”
Monreal has so far made 215 appearances for the Gunners since signing from Malaga for £10 million in January 2012. That is the definition of a bargain.