Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger says his No1 Manuel Almunia is very close to winning a maiden Spain call-up.

"He is not," Wenger told "I know that. There [are] always noises coming out of the camp so I know that this is thought about.

"It is a little bit like the Gregory Coupet story in France where he came late to Lyon and then the national team.

"But overall goalkeepers careers can start late. Sometimes it is down to getting the right chance and the right moment.

"I feel as well he was here in an environment with top-class keepers around him in the team like Lehmann who test you and push you. Certainly Gerry Peyton has helped him as goalkeeper coach as well.

"The conjunction of all these qualities has made him a better goalkeeper. But first of all, he has a fantastic attitude and wants always to improve."