Athletic want Arsenal player

Athletic Bilbao are hopeful of persuading Arsenal full-back Nacho Monreal to join the San Mames this summer, according to reports in Spain.

The 31-year-old’s Basque heritage means he has been a long-term transfer target for Athletic, and Marca report they are confident of landing Monreal this summer despite the fact he signed a new deal with Arsenal only last year.

The report states the Athletic’s qualification for the Europa League – secured following Barcelona’s Copa del Rey final victory over Alaves – has ensured they have both the sufficient funds and pulling power to conclude a deal.

The left-back was formerly coached by new Athletic boss Jose Angel Ziganda at Osasuna a decade ago and is reported to be close friends with a number of the side’s current players, including Raul Garcia.

Furthermore, the future of Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is still unclear and Marca believe a change in manager could quicken any deal.