Arsenal have met with former captain Laurent Koscielny and his representatives, to try to find some common ground over his decision not to travel to the US as part of Arsenal’s pre season tour.
Arsenal issued a terse and awkward statement after discovering the player’s intentions and have since mentioned disciplinary measures against the defender as both sides came to an uncomfortable impasse.
The club wanted to try to find a way to build bridges that would allow it to hold on to its experienced defender until a suitable replacement could be found, but it now looks like they are prepared to grudgingly let him go for the right valuation as per Sky News.
They had initially agreed his transfer to France with a number of interested parties from his homeland, but changed their mind after negotiations with Saint Etienne for defender William Saliba, which stated that the player would be committed to a season long loan back to his former club.
Things deteriorated once the player was informed of Arsenal’s new position and the situation was made public when Koscileny refused to join his team mates.
Arsenal then grew a pair of testicles by insisting the defender would only be allowed to leave for £8m, a spectacularly inflated fee for a perpetually injured player.
It’s said that the two sides are looking at a deal that will save face on both sides, but Arsenal’s fees will have to become a lot more realistic if a move is to actually happen. The club would certainly look for a fee, but it has to be significantly reduced to around the £1.5m mark at its lowest figure and £2.5m at its highest.
It was reported that Koscielny wanted to be released on a free but that was never going to happen with Arsenal’s reported financial woes, having already lost out with Aaron Ramsey, who could have generated millions for the club.
Koscielny is entitled to feel a little bit hard done by as Arsenal try to amend for their past mistakes by taking a tougher stance, but if the club had an ounce of common sense, it would cut its loses and allow the player to go.
Koscielny has given his best and as a consequence, has reduced his chances of longevity by sustaining a serious achilles injury. Its said that he requires ongoing daily treatment because of the extent of the problem and as such, it’s unlikely he will play into his late 30’s.
It’s a complicated mess, an undignified spectacle and a disappointing end to a nine year association, but you sense that the time for Koscielny to go, has arrived.
Former players have come out in support of the player including Mathieu Flamini and Olivier Giroud. Speaking to the BBC, Giroud said:
“You cannot make a judgement when you don’t have all the clues. I’m pretty sure we don’t know everything in this situation.”
“I hope both sides will find the best agreement.”
This is all meaningless waffle of course and does nothing to defuse a volatile situation, but behind closed doors there’s a growing realisation that this needs to be resolved before the season commences.
Distractions are as welcome as an unforeseen tax demand and both parties will find a solution because it’s genuinely in their best interests.