Arteta has been linked with Bilbao since the exit of Ander Herrera to Manchester United but the idea that Monreal is a target is fresher.
The original report claims that both players could be deemed surplus to requirements but there is a case for Arsene Wenger keeping each at the club, which would render these latest rumours pointless.
Arteta is one of the most experienced players in Arsenal’s midfield pack and experience is something the middle of this Arsenal side has lacked in recent times.
There have consistently been calls from Arsenal fans for a big character and experienced individuals to control the middle of the team in the same way Patrick Vieira used to when he was a Gunner.
Arteta is never going to be a Vieira type player, but he’s similar in the respect that he’s a leader and he has experience in a variety of situations.
Monreal is the club’s current cover for Kieran Gibbs at left-back unless Arsene Wenger is thinking about making him the primary left sided defender for the coming season.
Either way, Monreal’s importance to the club is clear because should Gibbs pick up an early season injury, he has Premier League experience and will be ready to step into the first team.
In each case, a player needs to come in before either can leave and Arsene Wenger has admitted that he’s looking for two more players before the end of the summer transfer window.
A centre-back coming in wouldn’t threaten Monreal’s place in the squad, it would strengthen it because that deal would allow Wenger to sell Thomas Vermaelen to Manchester United.
The other player expected is a defensive midfielder, which would allow Arteta to move forward into a central midfield role, rotating and competing against Aaron Ramsey for game time.
Rubbish Rating: It’s an understandable rumour but it would be too damaging to Arsenal for Arsene Wenger to allow it to happen.