Monreal: ‘My head is only at Malaga’

Malaga defender Nacho Monreal has appeared to put an end to speculation linking him with a move to Athletic Bilbao.

The Basques have been granted special dispensation until the end of September to sign another player, following the loss of Javi Martinez to Bayern Munich, and have placed Monreal at the top of their list.  

However, the former Osasuna man told a Press conference that he is looking forward to competing in this season’s Champions League with the Costa del Sol club.

“I really want to take part in the Champions League because I have never been able to play in the group stages of the competition [Osasuna were eliminated by Hamburg in the qualifying round].

“A great season lies ahead of us and my head is only at Malaga,” declared the Spanish international.

Los Blanquiazules have made a solid start to the La Liga season and currently sit third, having won two and drawn one of their opening games, and Monreal spoke of this Saturday’s opponents Levante.

“They are a difficult team to beat and are on quite a good run. We can’t forget what they did last season when they were the surprise team and had an excellent La Liga finish.

“They have also started well in the Europa League and it’s going to be a tough game.”

Monreal also commented on his role with the national side.

“It’s been a pretty good week. In one of the two games [Saudi Arabia in Pontevedra], I played the full 90 minutes and it was very rewarding.

“It is an honour to play for Spain and to share a dressing room with players of such a high level,” he enthused.

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