L’Equipe: Europa League final could be Koscielny’s last Arsenal game

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L’Equipe are reporting this morning that the Europa League final against Chelsea could be Laurent Koscielny’s last ever game as an Arsenal player.

The 33 year old will lead the Gunners out in Baku, hoping to lead the club to its first European trophy in 25 years.

The Frenchman’s agent revealed that he was considering his future last year when it was announced that Arsene Wenger would be leaving the club, seeing his own departure as a timely way to leave when the man who brought him to North London was also on his way out.

Then injury struck in the Europa League semi-final against Atletico Madrid, scuppering any possibility of a move.

It now appears as if he’s willing for one more challenge before he retires with Bayer Leverkeusen, AC Milan, Monaco and Rennes all interested.

A return to France seems most likely if he does go, but his departure would make an already complicated summer for Arsenal even more so.

Central defensive reinforcements are a must, and even if Koscielny was only a squad player next season it would make it easier to move on Shkodran Mustafi in whom many have lost faith after a difficult season.

The captain still has one year left on his current contract.

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HelderHughes
HelderHughes

Can we lose a player of his experience, passion and history with arsenal football club? Especially given the transient nature of our club at present.

If Kos is gone but Mustafi still here in September I’m gunna be pissed.

Gooner Sam
Gooner Sam

Couldn’t agree more, get Mustafi away from our team, he exudes panic in our defence

Wilsheres Middle Finger
Wilsheres Middle Finger

I’m not sold on Umtiti as a replacement either. We’re already carrying one injury prone, overpaid world cup winner with nothing left to prove.

IamaGoober

Koscielny should be seeing out his career at Arsenal. We’re cunts for not offering him something else. There are about 5 players ahead of him who we should be turfing out first.

atom
atom

@iamagoober
If it’s really a case of us not offering him a contract then I agree with your assertion but keep in mind he talked about leaving last year when Wenger did as the thought it would be a perfect time to move onto something else.

It might be a case of him wanting to go somewhere else before he retires – a slower/less physical league that might extend his career.

Amusa
Amusa

Give him a fucking year’s extension at least. Or maybe a one year extension with an option of another year. Get a decent CB in so he doesn’t have to play every game.
He’ still our best defender.
Sell Mustafi, send Mavpranos on loan. Keep the rest.

Alex
Alex

Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!

GoonerDane
GoonerDane

My favourite player of the current squad! Would be sad to see him go, but if he can finish on a high with a trophy it would be a worthy farewell to a massive player for the club in recent years.

Umtiti for €60m? Well, wouldn’t mind him at all, but if that move scuppers our plans for the rest of the needed bit of business this summer, I would hope we look elsewhere.
Good player though and definitely an improvement on our current crop of defenders.

Arsenalista
Arsenalista

If umtiti can’t get a place in a poor Barcelona defense what on earth do we want him here for, I know he is a world cup winner but so is mustafi. We need better defenders than this.

Amusa
Amusa

He won’t even get a proper farewell 🙁
No one deserves it more than him. This man would die for the badge.

GoonerDane
GoonerDane

He really epitomized those famous Tony Adams words: “Play for the name on the front of the shirt and they will remember the name on the back”.

Hopefully he can get a farewell-match at the Emirates at some point. Otherwise he will just have to be proper saluted at the trophy parade when Arsenal return from Baku.

AmericanGooner
AmericanGooner

This is so true. The man gave of his heart game in and game out.

This was best embodied, to me, just this season. I forget who we were playing, but we were up big and the game was put away. It was late in the game and Kos picked up a pretty decent knock where he was visibly hobbling and struggling to even walk. We were out of substitutions. I remember reading Papa’s lips as he told Kos, “Just go off” as he shrugged his shoulders. We had the game won after all. No need to risk body. But, Kos refused and even made a couple tackles after that.

Some may say that was stupid to risk further injury when it wasn’t necessary. But, I think those 10 odd minutes paralleled who Kos was. He gave 110% of his heart, emotion, and body every single minute on and off the pitch. He isn’t an extremely vocal leader, but we talk about leaders who lead by example and this was the perfect example of this.

He better be considered a legend when he goes.

Rich
Rich

It has to happen sooner or later….. I’m fine with this providing he’s adequately replaced.

I’d loan out Mavrapanos for the season to get some experience

Renew Bielik’s contract and have him as 5th choice centre back + Elneny’s replacement in midfield.

I’d sell Chambers for £25-30mill, try and sell Mustafi for £20mill, allow Koscielny to leave to free up some more wages, and try and get £10-12mill for Elneny.

That leaves Sokratis+Holding+Bielik

And leaves us hopefully £55-60million to pickup 1 quality experienced centre half+ younger centre half with big potential

Matt
Matt

Screw that. I’d just get the players to win all our games next season and win the quadruple. Sounds much simpler.

mjc1892
mjc1892

Said to my friend a few weeks back I had a bad feeling Kosc would angle for a move were we to win the EL- kinda makes sense for him. Don’t believe the Umtiti links but really don’t fancy him- especially not at 60m euros. Could have a fair crack at fully rebuilding the back line for that money.

Chris
Chris

One of the players that grew on me over the years since his poor 2-3 Seasons initially.

If we can keep him for 2 more seasons on a reduced role where he is the captain and leader to stabilise things. He could play 1 game a week or 2, maybe 25-30 games a season. By that time, Holding, Guendouzi and other young players would have matured and formed the next spine of the first time.

Our spine now is Leno, Kos, Ramsey (leaving), Lacazette. In 2 years time, it will be Leno, Holding, Guendouzi/Torreria, Lacazette. If we are not able to retain Kos for at least 1 year more, we will only have Holding, Sokratis, Chambers and Mustafi.

We will need to first win EL and qualify for UCL. We will need a new CB, LB, CM, Box to Box and RW forward. If we can move on Mustafi and one of Mkhitaryan or Ozil, we will need to replace them as well.

I think Rabiot will come to Arsenal once we can confirm our UCL. If not, he will probably choose to go other teams.

Let’s cheer our team on

Chris
Chris

May I also add on his drive, never say die and predator style strike in front of goal that scores us important goals in the past few years?

Kwame Ampadu Down
Kwame Ampadu Down

If he has a year left on his contract then I’m not that worried. I doubt we would let him go. For someone of his age it doesn’t seem unreasonable not to have offered to extend yet. That’s the way it’s always been when Arsene was in charge too.

Maul Person
Maul Person

So you didn’t see the comments from Raul about NOT letting contracts run down to a year, if the club wants to keep a player? Obviously things can still change and it’s as much down to the player as the club but time is running out to offer an extension. I wouldn’t be surprised if he did leave; the seed of leaving has already been sown from last season.

Kwame Ampadu Down
Kwame Ampadu Down

I did…but pretty certain he wasn’t talking about 34 year olds.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

Agreed, considering his age and injury history, I’m relaxed about this.

I don’t think either the execs or Emery will let him go. The honourable thing for both parties is to keep him for the length of his contract, let him enjoy a CL with us, let him go on a bosman and get a decent signing on package from Monaco or someone.

We wouldn’t even make much from selling him now, with his age and contract length. There are far more negatives to letting him go now then selling him.

Maul Person
Maul Person

You may misunderstand me (or I wasn’t clear). I personally would like him to stay. If it’s a matter of reducing his playing duties like Kompany, he’d still have an impact.

But the club’s position, particularly from Ramsey, may not allow that. Plus he, as a player, may not wish to. He stated at the beginning of the season that he wanted to retire in France. So I wouldn’t be surprised if he and the club parted ways.

Toure Motors
Toure Motors

Kos is a boss. Two years on a incentives based deal would be a good option. BTW it’s hard to believe it’s 25 years since smudger mugged Parma

TazzyBalboa
TazzyBalboa

Love the guy, I hope we keep him for at least another year as that would mean hes been with us for 10 years and hopefully we give him a testimonial. This guy deserves one considering how he’s psychically, emotionally and mentally given it all for us and even missed the world cup because he got injured for us. Anyway if this is his last season, he has been utterly brilliant for us and I hope he goes out on a high lifting the Europa League trophy.

Harding
Harding

Would be gutted to lose him. Back to being one of the PL’s best since he returned from injury, the way he’s changed his game he reads it so well and is much less reliant on pace. He’s also one of the only characters in our squad with genuine leadership qualities.

We should be pulling out all the stops to keep him, even if it is his wish to go – let him go next summer on a free for a last hurrah in France, we cannot afford to lose him this summer with the rebuilding job we’ve got on, we need a quality CB to add to him and Papa, not as a replacement!

Cultured determination
Cultured determination

What are we going to do without kos?

Hi Blogs, we’d appreciate it if you could change ths headline name from kos to mustafi.

Thank you.

hustle6
hustle6

Best 3 defenders at the club during my life time.

Adams.
Campbell
Koscielny.

In no particular order.

Bai Blagoi
Bai Blagoi

60m Euro?? I love Kos, but for that amount we should sell him. Just that I don’t believe that somebody will put that much money on the table.

GoonerDane
GoonerDane

Think you misread something there, mate..

Matt
Matt

Ha!

Daniel
Daniel

Nooooooooooo 🙁
One of few left who breathes for Arsenal when on the pitch. I know it makes sense with his injuries, but even if his gametime was managed, for example playing maximum of 1 game per week, then it still would better for us to keep him. Also all the young defenders (Holding, Chambers, Mavropanos, Bielik, Medley etc.) can learn a LOT from him. His experience really shows in his style of play, being more about about anticipating opponent’s next move, rather then going in aggressively, and without much thinking, like he used to when he first came (like Mustafi still does, showing no progress in his game at all). It’s just that it would be such a shame. We need to increase quality of our defenders even if he stayed, this would be just letting go of our best defender, while keeping the ones who are worse :/

Daniel
Daniel

Only now reading other posts after sending mine. It’s quite rare for so many fans to have such a united opinion on a player on this website. Someone should send link to these comments to Kos, might change his mind if he really wants to leave.

Tasmanian Jesus
Tasmanian Jesus

I cant see him joining Milan if Mustafi goes there. I bet he’d want an upgraded partner.

sambo
sambo

Poo meter must be jurassic right now. 60 mil on Umtiti haha i needed that laugh! Chelsea/Abramovich must have employed the KGB to spread fake news about us

Don’t Forget
Don’t Forget

Sign this man up.

Lord Bendnter
Lord Bendnter

He is one player I would gladly love to see him run down his contract. He has been very good this season and I think he will be very much needed next season. Please stay…

Hantal
Hantal

Wouldn’t be at all surprised, he’s been excellent this season but looks pained at the end of every game

Santori
Santori

As I mentioned.

Some people have their heads up their arse too long.

They let sentiment cloud their judgement.

Like on Mustafi (more useful player to us then say Elneny or Jenkinson) but also on Jenkinson (not a useful player for us but some people prefer to think he is better than he is bc of his club allegiance)

Koscielny will be an injury risk going forward next season. He is same age as Monreal but has more wear and tear issues.

Again he has been great for the club over recent seasons but started off more shaky than Mustafi (for those who prefer top be conveniently short on memory) with plenty of reds, own goals and penalties conceded in his first season.

He’s appearances for us have been sporadic this season (bc of injury issues) but critical.

Next season we need better availability and likely koscielny will go.

As I mentioned most likely (things can of course change) we will have a new CB with Sokratis and Holding then possibly Mustafi or Chambers.

Mavropanos (another some like to imagine more ready than he really is) should go on loan to accelerate his development.

Mustafi or Chambers depends on offers and of course if (say Chambers) has desire to stay and fight for a spot from the bench.

Hopfeully of course, this finals in Baku will be a shining was for BOTH Cech and Koscielny bow out in style and pomp they deserve.

Also to watch Welbeck who may leave. He could be potentially very useful without Mhki available.

George
George

“Some people have their heads up their arse too long.”

Self-awareness is a good first step.

Goonerink

learn to parenthesis sanitary

Goonerink

bloody autocorrect …*finger guns*

Erzengel
Erzengel

Mustafi is a more useful or relevant player than Elneny or Jenkinson – no shit.

Mustafi as a regular fixture in our first XI when he makes such elementary, crushingly bad errors so regularly, that cost us so badly, is not something that our club can afford, irrespective of his pricetag and wages.

We all know he is a World Cup winner capable of outstanding games. We know this. Bur we must replace him at this stage. Be reasonable. Be serious.

Frank Bascombe
Frank Bascombe

They’re holding him together with sellotape and have been for a couple of years. He’s been great but he’s finished. That said, he’s still superior to German centreback we’re lumbered with. That said, who isn’t?

kas
kas

I’m sure I read awhile ago that ‘Kos’ wanted to finish his career at Lorient where he played before. It’s up to him really.

DBMÖ10
DBMÖ10

If either of Leverkusen or Milan are to have him it should be for Tah or Romagnoli with a tonne of cash extra. Bailey or suso might help too.
Our legendary captain shouldn’t be let go off for peanuts.