Has Arsene Wenger signed another gem, or simply a moderate upgrade from Andre Santos?
The early signs point towards the former, with the Spanish international laying down a marker with a solid debut against Stoke.
Arsenal's new number 17 played his part in keeping their first clean sheet in five matches, even if Stoke offered few ideas going forward.
Santi Cazorla's former and now new teammate went straight in at left-back with Kieran Gibbs injured. Here are a few statistics from Nacho Monreal's debut:
- Monreal (2) had more shots than any other Gunners defender, but neither found the target.
- He made one key pass which led to a shot at goal by a teammate, more than any other Arsenal defender.
- His one successful dribbling attempt was also the highest of any Arsenal defender.
- He completed 85 per cent of his passes, 53 attempts in total, which was bettered by Bacary Sagna who completed 91 per cent of his 64.
- Monreal and Sagna both put in three crosses each, the joint fourth highest of any Arsenal players in the match - with Arteta, Wilshere and Walcott (13) attempting more.
- Monreal made one tackle, five clearances and two interceptions.
He certainly impressed manager Arsene Wenger, who was keen to 'big up' his deadline day buy's performance.
Wenger said: "The satisfaction is that Nacho Monreal had a good start for a player who just arrived yesterday and is in the team. He did not have time to think about it, but he got stronger and stronger during the game.
"There is no better culture shock than Stoke when you come from Spain! They had a very physical game and I think he dealt well with it."
But what did supporters think of Monreal's debut efforts? We took to Twitter to gauge the reaction:
@seywill007: Seems like Nacho Monreal has been with
#AFC from the start of the season.. Had a wonderful game for a first timer...
@allarsenal1886: I was at the game yesterday, and I have to say that whilst being a bit nervy, Nacho Monreal had an impressive debut. Very promising
@lurchos: Monreal had a great debut