Nacho Monreal: Playing for Arsenal has helped my Spain chances

Nacho Monreal. Photo: PA

Arsenal defender Nacho Monreal believes moving to England has boosted his chances of gaining a regular spot in the Spain team.

Left-back Monreal, who has won 15 caps with the reigning world and European champions, joined the Gunners from Malaga on transfer deadline day in January for an undisclosed fee.

The 27-year-old has largely been consigned to substitute appearances for Arsene Wenger's team this season but he nevertheless sees the switch to the Barclays Premier League as being a positive for his international hopes.

Asked if he thinks he has more chance of playing for Spain since his move to London, former Osasuna defender Monreal told Marca: "I think so yes. I was at Malaga for 18 months and I grew a lot as a player.

"The move to the Premier League is a jump in quality and a jump forward. I think being part of a team like Arsenal helps."

Monreal has started two of Spain's last three matches and he will be hoping to get a further chance to impress coach Vicente del Bosque in the upcoming friendlies against Equatorial Guinea and South Africa.

The goal, of course, is to secure a place in Spain's squad for next summer's World Cup finals in Brazil.

He added: "I'd like that. I'm aware that it's not going to be easy, also partly because I'm not getting as many minutes as I would like with Arsenal.

"I'm going to continue fighting and working hard because I really want to be at the World Cup."