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 đŸ€đŸ™ŒđŸŸ #respect

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TorontoGunner
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
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
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
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 “+ÂŁ1”, but I have never seen a convincing explanation for why that was so.

rohit
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
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
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
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
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
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
Reality check

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

SG_Gooner
SG_Gooner

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

Goonerrific
Goonerrific

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

TorontoGunner
TorontoGunner

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

Wilshere's Middle Finger
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
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 our great club.

I really hope he comes looking for a coaching role in the future just so we can shut the door in his face one last time.

No I’m not an unreasonable and angry fan, but this guy can go fuck himself.

Futsboller
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 from the club’s own fans is truly remarkable. I suppose the medium makes the message possible, but it’s a shame. My fault for bothering to read the comments everyday, but I still hope to find the wisdom here that’s often lying around in eloquence.

Cechmate
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
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 any other professional CB we had on the bench the last two seasons. Lolo reminds me of Kolo Toure, when he would stamp out a hamstring, and return to the fray.

It is of my opinion that Raul and co, wanted him to travel so as not to show our hands to the market – get him on tour promoting the new kit, no one s know better! They must have known they would need to get a CB in anyway, as they were probably aware that Saliba would not be with us for a year, while trying to shift Mustafi. Kos leaving has left us with Mustafi closer to the first team. The club has to rectify that.

Loyalty – we don’t want Mustafi to remain loyal to the club, Jenkinson to a lesser extent too. A number of players wanted to play for Arsene, and we’ve heard many say it was the main factor when signing. Of course Arsene would not be happy about Kos not seeing out his contract…very ungentlemanly, except if there was a gentleman’s agreement. Gigity.

Saw the shirt change….all I did was grin. It’s not as if Gerard Pique set upon him with a Bordeaux shirt. Can’t even remember if he was wearing a Puma or Adidas kit. I hope he emptied his pockets of all strikers before getting to customs.

Thanks for the final day goals, thanks for everything, farewell le Boss.

Dave M
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
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
Lettra

Or Vermalend

Reality check
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
Arsenalfanman

How’s it working out for Alexis? Haha.

HelderHughes
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
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
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
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
loose_cannon

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

Just leaving this here without discussion. Speaks for itself!

HelderHughes
HelderHughes

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

Reality check
Reality check

Very classy Kos, thanks..

Twatsloch
Twatsloch

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

George
George

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

Dave M
Dave M

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

Wrighty – a TRUE club legend.

Mpls
Mpls

Bossxit

Anonymarse
Anonymarse

When Bellerin goes we can have Bellerend

Ozilshere
Ozilshere

Or maybe Bellerout 😁

Anonymarse
Anonymarse

I suppose you could have Boxit

Or koxit

Jarghs
Jarghs

Koxit, you can probably get a cream for that.

momozemio
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… cheersđŸ·

kaius
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
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
CalgaryGooners

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

Iron Ljung
Iron Ljung

:'(

OliNorfBank
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
Greg

Nice touch with the shirt in his video

OliNorfBank
OliNorfBank

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

Dave M
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 thinking class still exists in football.

Twatsloch
Twatsloch

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

LEFT08
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
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
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
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 be one. He’s not the type of person who’ll take a stand.

I strangely don’t feel the urge to get angry with him. He gave us his best years and he’s moved on to something that suits his body and his family. He could’ve obviously handled it better but it’s all water under the bridge now.

Good bye Laurent. Farewell.

Dave M
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
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
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 of the club. He’s not after money, he’s a family man and wants to go back to his own country. As for the Twitter thing, what’s the big deal? It’s not like it was his idea or that it symbolises anything other than a change of club. Thanks Koscielny for your near decade of prodessionalism, hard work, grit, crunching tackles and I’m sorry that some people have such short memories.

Twatsloch
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
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
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
Dom

What makes it low class?

Dave M
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 it’s a low class act IMO!

kaius
kaius

Perfect explanation.

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

Peter
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
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
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 that was meant to cause offence – then you ridicule the people who have become offended by the act. What is done is done, we move on. But you do not get the right to invalidate people’s emotions around a thing that was meant to stir some form of emotion simply because it does not evoke that emotion from you. đŸ‘đŸŸ

You have every right not to be offended by that video.đŸ‘đŸŸ
Other people have every right to be offended by that video. đŸ‘đŸŸ

The league starts on Sunday, we need defenders. đŸ‘đŸŸ

Twatsloch
Twatsloch

Bang on!

Wilshere's Middle Finger
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
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
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
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 contract and the company you want to go to wouldn’t pay a fee, that’s not how the real world works. You can happily apply for a new job, hand in your notice, get a nice leaving card and start your new job.
Mostly I hope this isn’t an excuse when we don’t buy a defender, the whole “we didn’t expect him to leave” when at very least he went on strike at the start of the window, you’d think was some indication. Tired of Emerys we’ll only sign players that will improve the team, as literally anyone would improve the defence. My nan is available, not quite as mobile as she used to be, but pretty sure she’d out defend Mustafi.

Dave Cee
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
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 the contract extension I believe in Jan ‘18.

Reading this crap about him collecting his check while injured lol what’s the problem with that? did he not get hurt playing for arsenal on bad leg to begin with? He could have easily just sat out towards the end of the season and waited for the World Cup. He didn’t injure himself skating during the week. He got injured fighting for a spot in CL for arsenal.

Cyprus The Immortal Gooner
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
Nameless_Gooner

Still the announcement video was of bad taste

SarcasmB0t
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
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