Koscielny: Arsenal departure came after months of discussions

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Laurent Koscielny has gone some way to explaining his departure from the club in a message on Instagram, after his move to Bordeaux was confirmed earlier today.

We say some way, because he sort of went at it, then slide tackled himself, before booting the ball upfield.

Which is to say that it’s not the most coherent farewell message you’ll ever read from a player, but in any case, here’s what he had to say:

As you know I engaged with @girondins [Bordeaux]. After 9 years spent at Arsenal, I took the decision to leave.

I have spent wonderful years with this club, nine years during which I learned, evolved, grew up.

This experience made me the player I am today. My decision to leave has been discussed for months with my club, my teammates, my coach, and it has been a well thought decision.

I see this departure like a new turning point in my life as a player but also in in my life as a man and a family man.

However I hope you understand, and in any case I cannot be thankful enough for these years past at Arsenal.

I am aware of everything that the club and you supporters have brought to me. But it is time for me to go home so today my will is to join the @girondins. This is a new challenge that I count on taking with determination.

Lolo

The past is now the past. We have to look to the future, and ensure we have sufficient defensive strength to start the new season.

Links with Dayot Upamecano and Daniele Rugani continue, but there’s not a lot of time left to get deals done.

Meanwhile, also on Instagram, Alexandre Lacazette says:

Thanks Captain , it’s been a pleasure and an honor to play 2 years alongside you ??? #respect

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TorontoGunner

Kos the boss. You will always be my favourite Arsenal captain since I started supporting Arsenal. Our best defender for the past so many years. All the best Lolo.

Canuck Gooner

I am torn. Koscielny became my favourite player after Jack left. I just wish his departure would have been handled differently, both by the player and the club. I think both parties deserved better than what transpired and in the end I think it is Koscielny’s legacy that will suffer most as a result.

Canuck Gooner

Update: I am no longer torn after having just seen the video on Twitter where he takes off the Arsenal shirt to reveal the Bordeaux shirt underneath. Regardless of what happened, that is disgraceful behaviour for a former club captain.

Peter

Can somebody explain exactly what is disgraceful about it? My gut reaction when I heard about it was “that’s not very good”. But after thinking about it some more, I haven’t been able to articulate a good reason for thinking that it is disrespectful or worthy of condemnation. So I’ve come to the conclusion that it isn’t.

It’s like the Luis Suarez bid many years ago: people were constantly saying that Arsenal was being disrespectful to Liverpool with the “+£1”, but I have never seen a convincing explanation for why that was so.

rohit

Exactly… it’s just a PR stunt that some marketing executive at Bordeaux must’ve thought to be cool. The modern world’s focus on feeding people’s sense of entitlement and the consistent media drivel that only wants to elicit some type of reaction from people have made us all way too sensitive to things that might’ve been laughed off or simply ignored a decade back.

Dave M

He picked the one thing that fans care about most – the team and the emblem of the team is the shirt. He cast it aside like it was nothing. That says way more than a pathetic rambling Instagram message. That act didn’t affect management who he has had his Conflict with it affected fans… And the fans here loved him and even after his piss poor behaviour were still giving him the benefit of the doubt. Not anymore. Just another selfish, overpaid, ego maniac, with no respect for the people that made him a millionaire… THE FANS!

Peter

He removed a shirt, like a normal human being. He didn’t set fire to it, tear it to shreds or stomp on it. The only thing I can see being symbolised in the video is the fact that he has changed clubs, which is an objectively true fact.

Criticism of what Koscielny did to force the move is justified. I remain puzzled at why we should be distraught over a frivolous but unremarkable video.

Dave M

Respect is to leave you previous club out of it (especially a symbol like the shirt that Fans hold pride in). Easy.

Dave M

At least Wrighty knows how it is:
Ian Wright on Twitter:
“This hurts. The level of disrespect. You should be ashamed for the way you’ve left the club after nine years! Got what you wanted and still trying to have a dig. Hope it’s worth it in the long run.”
True club legend Wright there! Sadly, there aren’t many Ian Wright types left in Football.

Number one penny

Spot on as concerns Kos.

As for the Liverpool bid. Poor tactics. Being right and being effective are two different things. Considering he was at a rival club. It was naive to stir them up. IMO they should have bid 40.5million or 41 to activate and show some respect to avoid what happened. Plus I think his agent misinformed arsenal as it seemed it wasn’t the only condition for him to exit.

Reality check

Peter
To understand the difference, you first have to learn about respect and class. The likes of Laurent lack both..

SG_Gooner

Did he throw the puma one or the Adidas one.?

Goonerrific

My only response to that my friend is that you clearly haven’t been an Arsenal supporter for long.

TorontoGunner

yeah well since 2008 when Cesc was the captain and i’m 25 so yes sir

Wilshere's Middle Finger

None still. It doesn’t make it okay. This needs to be a turning point and we need to stop getting mugged off by petulant self indulgent brats.

Gooooooonnnnaaaaaaaa

Kos was my favorite player but he can go fuck himself. Hes surrounded by a bunch of idiots. 9 years down the drain. All I remember is the stupid mistakes and the points he cost us during his first couple of seasons. Moving on from this idiot, I’d like our club to stop being the only club using sentiment and be more ruthless going forward. Next time a piece of shit plans on leaving but gets injured (as he did before he snapped his Achilles at Atletico), you send him out to dry. Fuck Koscienly and his non-existent legacy at… Read more »

Futsboller

Man, anybody read Lacazette’s tweet? Respect, please. And Laca had only 2 years with him, whereas we got to watch and support him for 9. His job was to entertain us, and he did just that. He’s not some 22-year-old taking his best years elsewhere, or going to a rival to win the league — he’s taking a curtain call back in his homeland. He was never going to stay forever, always made it clear that he wanted to finish his career in France, so just let it go. The disrespect and even sometimes vitriol one can read on here… Read more »

Cechmate

Exactly! He is 34 years old and has decided his body cannot take the vigour of premier League, wants to return home. It’s already been decided along with the club to move on and then they ask him to travel – if you’re a 34 old with a creaking body, would you want to travel? What if you get injured again?

Fans need to get over this “disrespect” thing – most of us would have done this in our jobs too.

It Is What It Is

Yesterday, I thought there was a gentleman’s agreement in between Kos and the club. Seems it was more than that, with a number of parties in the know. Missed out on a World Cup appearance partly due to being overplayed while in the red zone and on injections, despite him and the club being aware of his robust playing style. I wouldn’t blame him for refusing to go on tour and staying fit, while waiting for the transfer/offer everyone and their dog knew was coming. I winced every time he got clattered, hoping that we didn’t have to call upon… Read more »

Dave M

So what you are saying is that players can do whatever they want say whatever they want and we need to just praise them as heros… Yeah right…

HelderHughes

Koscielny, Bielik, Amaechi, no hard feelings. But you’ve left the greatest club in the world and very few players leave to go on to bigger and better things. Hope you haven’t Hlebed, Songed or Petited.

Now, on with the season. Let’s sign some fucking defenders!

Lettra

Or Vermalend

Reality check

Verminator was very dignified till the very end. Didn’t make a sound even when relegated from captain to all way to the bench.

Arsenalfanman

How’s it working out for Alexis? Haha.

HelderHughes

You know, apart from Gnabry, we’ve been pretty bloody good over the years at selling players whose ceilings aren’t too much higher than what we got out of them.

Compare that with genius Jose who sold Salah, de Bruyne and Lukaku.

sami

Actually 23 players have been sold to 19 clubs and won 56 trophies with their new clubs, Ashley Cole, Cesc, Clichy, Nasri, RVP, Adebayor, etc etc etc lol.

Duckbert

Thats a bit off. Only three out of that list played a pivotal role in their later success: Cashley, Cesc and RVP.

And RVP was running out of time. Dude spent half his time on the treatment table and he knew it. He had 2 more years at the top flight then retired over 3 years in B leagues. Never held it against that guy – getting old sucks.

Vonnie

He’s not going on to bigger and better things, he’s going home, to a club near his family where he can join the coaching staff when he retires. And Bielik wasn’t given a chance, so what choice did he have?

loose_cannon

https://twitter.com/girondins/status/1158767162640732160

Just leaving this here without discussion. Speaks for itself!

HelderHughes

Ok. So that’s that decided. The guy’s a massive prick.

Reality check

Very classy Kos, thanks..

Twatsloch

Way beneath what I expected of him. Really poor form!

George

Yeah, had/have a lot of time for Kos, but that’s a pretty dick move.

Dave M

Ian Wright’s response on twitter…
https://twitter.com/IanWright0/status/1158862518061817859
Speaks for itself.

Wrighty – a TRUE club legend.

Mpls

Bossxit

Anonymarse

When Bellerin goes we can have Bellerend

Ozilshere

Or maybe Bellerout ?

Anonymarse

I suppose you could have Boxit

Or koxit

Jarghs

Koxit, you can probably get a cream for that.

momozemio

A simple message from a simple man. No polemic or stupid anger against the club or whoever promised him anything… Appreciated what you brought to the Arsenal, your courage and simplicity. all the best in Bordeaux… cheers?

kaius

Well, no apology to the club’s fans for skipping out on the US Tour either.

Combined with his ill-judged shirt stunt (it’s not a big thing in isolation, but in the context of how he forced his move, it is another detail that makes you question him) I’ve lost a little respect for him.

But we are The Arsenal, and just because someone disrespects us, we don’t have to stoop their level. Good luck in France and stay healthy Lolo

Gman

Many thanks for your service through the hard times. It’s a new dawn, it’s a new day, it’s a new life.
Good luck Koscielny.

CalgaryGooners

Great for 9 years. Dickhead for a month. I prefer to remember the 9 years. Thanks captain.

Iron Ljung

:'(

OliNorfBank

On one hand I appreciate we need to take a hard line with how someone who was meant to be our captain conducted himself but mainly I feel that Kos deserves thanks for being a relative rock in the past 9 years and I wish him all the best – such a shame it’s ended like this as would have loved him to get a formal club fanfare style farewell. But regardless strongly believe in time his legacy will be appreciated by most – nice one Lolo ?

Greg

Nice touch with the shirt in his video

OliNorfBank

Just badly thought out promotional content from a small club media team

Dave M

No, he had a choice to go along with it and he chose to go along with it. If he can see it as a problem to the fans that lauded him then he is more brainless than I gave him credit for and if he knew what he was doing then he is more of a prick than I gave him credit for. Either way, thanks for the good times Koz, now…fuk off…no more well wishes after that stunt. I gave him the benefit of the doubt until now, but no more. Thought he was better…shame on me for… Read more »

Twatsloch

That video is something I’d expect from John Terry or some Stoke cunt, not Laurent Koscielny.

LEFT08

What legacy is that? I think we’ve all become too soft with millionaire playera who think they’re doing us a favor playing for the club. Ask Parlour, Smith, Bould and Dixon how George Graham would deal with a Koscielny. I realize times are different but the player power is absolutely out of control and we as fans ought to stop feeding it.

LEFT08

A dissapointing end to his Arsenal career. He clearly managed the end badly, which confirms what I always thought of him, that he lacked what it takes to be a leader. Let’s hope somebody better comes in now.

It’s my island

Sad to see all the thumbs down on here. At the end of the day he played his best years with us, probably could have left with the likes of van Persie and the rest that jumped ship. He wanted to go home that’s fair enough with me. I wish him best of luck but we should have had a center back in by this stage of the window.

Ricochet

The shirt change video kind of shows that he’s a really gullible person. He put his body on the line for us because our managers asked him to do that. He probably wanted to return home because his family wanted that. He made the decision to not go on the US tour probably because his advisors told him to do that. Made the shirt change video because the club’s media team asked him to do that. He just does what he’s told to do. He was never a leader for us on the field, and it’s alright. Not everyone can… Read more »

Dave M

There are two options here as I said elsewhere:
(1) He is too stupid to realise how much of a fuk you to fans of Arsenal that stunt would be.
(2) He knew and didn’t care because he was too pissed at the management of Arsenal and in doing so purposely gave a fuk you to the fans on the way out also.
So it’s him being a fuking moron or him being a complete kunt! Either way – fuk him.

Oneofbellerinscornrows

Not a fan of his tweet, taking off the Arsenal jersey to reveal Bordeaux’s. Seemed unnecessary to me, but all the best to him. Now we really really need a quality centre back.

James

I don’t understand all the criticism, for example people calling him a ‘primadonna’. Koscielny showed his professionalism on the pitch for years, delivering quality performances when those around him couldn’t. He’s 33 years old, near the end of his contract and has earned the right to leave he wants to leave. There was clearly some kind of agreement to that effect before Gazidis left that has been reneged on by the new management. I don’t know why everyone is pointing the finger at Koscielny when the focus should be the lack of respect shown to a great servant and leader… Read more »

Twatsloch

The deal with the Twitter video is that it’s low class. I’d expected cunts like Terry or Diego Costa to pull something like that, not Koscielny.

Mike22122

Is it? I get and agree that it’s not great, but given his service to the club and the reason for his wanting out, the agreements broken with the change of the guard at arsenal. Is not like he pissed on the old shirt guys probably just relieved to be back home. Imo hes gone from being night on a legend to simply being a good former captain who did well. It’s no nasri Cole alexis move. If we replace him with similar quality I wont be moaning.

Twatsloch

What that video says is that 9 years of service to a club and the relationship he has/had with its fans is as easily discarded as the removal of a shirt. I get that he’s angry with the club and I’m leaning more towards him being in the right but that’s about management, not us fans and his former team mates, and that video sends all the wrong signals. That was ill advised and when the dust has settled I reckon he’ll regret it.

Dom

What makes it low class?

Dave M

What do fans care about? The shirt and the team. So what does this symbolise by actually taking of your previous shirt and casting it off? Any normal promo video is ONLY about the new club. This doesn’t target management who don’t share the love of the club and shirt it targets fans that (try) to hold a ideological love of something they believe/wish/hope sports still stand for; fans that love their team and that shirt with a passion. It’s low class. Glad you live in a world where millionaires shouldn’t be held accountable for their actions, I don’t and… Read more »

kaius

Perfect explanation.

Interesting that even fans of our rivals left comments saying how classless it is as well

Peter

What’s “low class” about it? It’s symbolic of nothing more than that he is switching from one club to the other. I keep seeing comments that it was disrespectful or rude or a middle finger to Arsenal, but nobody seems to be able to explain why. Sure, it’s a bit silly on the part of the person at Bordeaux who dreamed it up, but that’s hardly a crime.

Don Cazorleone

It’s because some people take this shit wayyy too seriously and look for reasons to be angry and venomous.

The whole thing is overblown with “legend” this and “body on the line” that.

We had a bloke come and play some football, and then he got old and has gone to do that somewhere else.

But that narrative doesn’t generate revenue for news stations, journalists, or blogs.

You’re literally only mad at this because you’ve been told to be.

NairoGunner89

Every one I see defending the shirt swap seem to think it was only ill-advised and not disrespectful. The thing is, it is disrespectful because it was ill-advised, perhaps from the word go. It was a bad Idea, he did not have to go along with it. It was a dig guys, I get that people are trying to stand out by not being the ones who are “as easily offended by these types of things” and that is great, good for you. But even if that is how you truly feel, you have admitted to it being a thing… Read more »

Twatsloch

Bang on!

Wilshere's Middle Finger

He erased his Arsenal legacy just as quickly as he took off our jersey in his intro video as far as I’m concerned. Hero to zero doesn’t even come close. What a monumental shame.

Tristian Beale

He lost me with the whole refusing to go on tour thing but the shirt video? Not really bothered by it and can’t see the big deal.

Cyprus The Immortal Gooner

Our captain refusing to join the tour did it for me. I liked Kos a lot but I’m Arsenal above all and the 5m are very much needed. Imho he owes Arsenal a lot more than we owe him and I’ll leave it at that. Btw he could have refused talking off the Arsenal shirt in that video. We have thousands of player’s getting transferred and never saw that. Totally unnecessary…

The Spoon

A lot of sentimental rubbish here, and people criticising fans for being angry. Who cares if he wanted to go home, fact is he signed a new contract last year, for 2 years. He took the money while injured, and now he’s forced a move by effectively going on strike now he’s fit. Doesn’t matter who you are that’s piss poor behaviour, and it’s not as though he’s a club legend. He won’t be remembered as a great. As for the you’d do it in your job nonsense, no you wouldn’t, and in your job you wouldn’t have signed a… Read more »

Dave Cee

I don.t want this to sound too mean spirited but I am glad he has gone. Not just because of his unprofessional recent behaviour, but more importantly necause I feel the club needs better defenders and an upgrade on Kos is sorely needed. Getting a few million and his wages off the books can help

Caligunner

What is the problem here? He’s going to be 33-4 this season with 1 season left on the contract. This happens in football all the time. It’s not like he’s going to another PL club. He’s going back to France to finish his career. If we have to rely on a player coming off major injury at his age to be an important player this season we have bigger problems than kos not going on tour. If there was an oral agreement between him and IG and the new leadership wasn’t honoring it makes arsenal look like asses. He signed… Read more »

Cyprus The Immortal Gooner

He wouldn’t go to the World Cup if he just waited because they wouldn’t pick him after months of inactivity…

Nameless_Gooner

Still the announcement video was of bad taste

SarcasmB0t

Honestly, I never thought he was that great. Neither him nor Mertesacker were world-beaters, they were just the best we had – and, remember, they were the pillars of a defense which was notoriously bad.

We signed Mustafi for 35 million (!!!) because we were desperate for an upgrade in the area and because the pair was always injured.

There’s this notion that he must have been great because he was a French international, but France did quite alright without him.

We need an upgrade, because Koscielny was never good enough.

Nas

Well koscielny was an enjoyable player.. classy and left his heart out on the pitch.. everytime.. was a good fighter.. people make mistakes… stupid brainless.. dilebrate and idiotic.. but regret is always there.. he tarnished his legacy no doubt.. but as a human being.. i give him the benefit of doubt.. its just a rubber ball in the end.. an enjoyable one nonethless kicked by the greatest team! TheArsenall.. farewell Kos.. be smart in life bro.. gave me some good memories and bad.. adios