Arsenal have had recent problems with players entering the last year of their deals - but there has been no such problems with Nacho Monreal.
Unai Emery has maintained that he wanted to keep his compatriot, and with Monreal entering the dicey end of his current deal, Arsenal have extended the Spaniard’s stay with the club until the summer of 2020.
The thought was that Monreal would be given a longer extension than this one-year extension, but with Nacho struggling for fitness for much of this season, the deal is for a solitary extra season.
Monreal may be looking to regain his fitness, but when at the sharp end, he has proven time and again that he is a defender we need in our ranks.
Also, at 32, most players are on the downturn of their abilities, but Monreal has an incredible engine and strength, and can offer much this and next season. He has also shown his defensive skills when filling in at centre-back - showing how dependable he really is.
The simplicity of this extension is at odds with dealings in previous campaigns, where players leave the club in limbo and place demands that are unreasonable at best. Monreal has been a fine servant for the club, and no one can argue that he doesn’t deserve it - or that this isn’t good news for Arsenal.
There is still much work to do for Raul Sanllehi and his backroom team in terms of players entering the last year of their deal - and thus able to leave for free.
Petr Cech, Danny Welbeck and Aaron Ramsey are all into the final half-year of their current deals, and if they were left to run down their deals, then we would lose out on a fair amount of transfer cash. Stephane Lichtsteiner, who signed a one-year deal this past summer, is also able to leave for free this summer.
Monreal is a great start, but we’ve got a way to go before we can say we’ve improved the security of our squad.