Arsene Wenger says ‘reliable’ Spanish defender is ‘important’ to Arsenal’s cause

Having scored one as well as providing two goals for Arsenal during the club’s rampant 4-1 victory over Crystal Palace in the Premier League on Saturday, Arsene Wenger has nothing but glowing plaudits for the ‘reliable’ Nacho Monreal, who certainly exhibited his class against Roy Hodgson’s hapless Eagles.

Wenger’s north-Londoners were enduring an adverse period of the 2017-18 season prior to their dominant performance against Palace at the Emirates, although the adaptable Spanish defender – who emphatically netted the tie’s opener with a thumping header – certainly dispersed the desolate cloud which formally loomed large over the Gunners’ flaky domestic form.

Speaking to the club’s official website, ‘Le Prof’ gleefully announced: “He is an important player for us and we could see that again today,

“When he was out, we missed him because he has experience, he is serious, he is reliable. Of course, it is important that he is with us.”

Recognised as a full-back by trade, the 31-year-old is competently capable of deputising at centre-half, particularly as part of a back three, something that Wenger believes is beneficial to his squad’s prosperity as it allows him to calibrate a squad which is suited to dealing with the tests they encounter against differing opposition, week in, week out.

“He is absolutely vital for us because he can play centre back in the three, he can play full-back in the four. It gives me many options to choose the tactics of the way we play, before the game.” The French tactician added.

“He is confident, he has good timing and he is an intelligent player and a very professional player.”

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