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Best Defender Of The Emirates Era Set To Leave Arsenal But Is It The Right Thing To Do ?

Laurent Koscielny, Laurent, Dakonam, Koscielny

Koscielny to part company with Arsenal. I’m normally quite scathing of Arsenal’s contract negotiations but the assurances Laurent Koscielny has been seeking regarding his future at the Emirates are not about to be met anytime soon and for good reason.

Let’s firstly examine the reasons why the club are not willing to extend the Frenchman’s contract by two or three years.
Koscielny has not been physically fit for a number of seasons and even before he suffered a devastating Achilles tendon injury, which kept him out of the side for seven months, he looked a yard slower and less assertive.

Koscielny had been the stand out central defender for two seasons but the pace and wear and tear of the premier league almost ended his career.

Koscielny made a decent contribution last season when he was called upon to cover injuries and at times looked okay but he has lost his edge and only his sense of positional play and spatial awareness have prevented him from being completely embarrassed against quick opposition.

I’m not really sure that the Frenchman’s body is capable of more than 15 or so competitive games per season and playing him less would be a fairly shrewd and kind act to preserve his career for three more years.

Say what you will but Koscielny has always been brave and has tended to throw himself into challenges as the last form of defence in an incompetent backline. It’s those types of incidents that have cost the Arsenal Captain and at 33 years of age, his reliability in four demanding competitions is highly questionable.

The only positive move is for Arsenal to extend his contract by a further 12 months or place him on an appearance based contract but I doubt the proud Frenchman will be satisfied with something that reflects his obvious decline.

Realistically, Arsenal should treat the player with the respect he deserves, whilst remaining mindful that he is well past his best. Koscielny is able to put in a full shift on occasion but the glowing performances that were once frequent features of his game are becoming more of a collectors items.

In someways it would be kinder to have one of those elaborate and woolly endorsements that Arsenal are best known for, as they cut him loose. One of those “by mutual agreement” things that they do so well, possibly presented by someone who is completely vacuous and insincere like Raul Sanllehi, Arsenal’s Director of football.

There will be takers for his services, perhaps in France and a coaching role in the long term because of his invaluable experience but I personally cant see Koscielny playing at the top level beyond his 35th Birthday.

The Highbury Flyer
Anti Kroenke , anti Gazidis but always a gooner. Still wishes he could watch from the stands at the Highbury library.

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