Arsenal's Nacho Monreal ready for the biggest game of his career

Arsenal's Nacho Monreal is preparing for his big chance with the Spanish national side in a crucial fixture.

It is shaping up to be quite a 2013 for Nacho Monreal.

The left-back clinched a career-changing move on transfer deadline day when he swapped Malaga for Arsenal in move which cost the Gunners £8.3 million.

Now he is shaping up for what could just be the biggest game of his career so far.

Monreal is likely to start for Spain against France on Tuesday in the upcoming World Cup Qualifier, a match which has been described in his homeland as a 'must-win' for Vincent Del Bosque's side.

Monreal has 10 caps for Spain, but only of of his appearances came in a competitive fixture - The rest were all friendlies.

Yet to play at an international tournament, the only qualifier Monreal has played in was back in October 2009, when he featured for 90 minutes in a 2-1 win over Armenia, in which Fabregas and Mata scored the goals.

Now Monreal is going to be thrown back in at the deep end, after first-choice left-back Jordi Alba picked up an injury which will sideline him for seven to 10 days.

While Vincent del Bosque described the match against France as 'one of two finals' - Monreal played down the comments.

He told Marca"It's too early to talk about finals, but we know full well that there's no margin for error. Losing in France would leave us five points adrift in what is a really small group, making topping the group an uphill struggle."

Spain currently sit two points behind France at the top of Qualifying Group I, with four games played each.

Monreal will come face-to-face with a winger he was prevented from playing against for Arsenal recently due to being cup-tied against Bayern, Franck Ribery - who scored for France against Georgia at the weekend in a 3-1 win.

The pressure is really on Monreal, and the whole Spain squad, to get a result away to France; and it won't be easy.

But judging from his performances since joining Arsenal, there will be very few who doubt he is up to the task.

Are you pleased Monreal will get his big chance for Spain? Can they beat France?

image: © Ronnie Macdonald


Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch