Arsenal have officially confirmed the departure of Laurent Koscielny. The veteran centre-back has returned to France to join Ligue 1 outfit Bordeaux.
The switch brings Koscielny’s nine-year stay at the Emirates Stadium to an end. During that time, the 33-year-old made 353 appearances for the Gunners, and scored 27 goals. He also captained the club in recent seasons and won three FA Cups as an Arsenal player.
However, his relationship with the club and much of the Arsenal fanbase has been soured in recent weeks. Koscielny made no secret of his wish to depart this summer, and ultimately refused to embark on Arsenal’s pre-season tour of the USA in order to force an exit.
This behaviour appeared deeply unprofessional, and will tarnish his legacy in north London. His actions can be considered even more irresponsible considering how weak Arsenal’s defensive contingent currently is. Koscielny was one of their better players at the back last season. Unai Emery would surely have had him in his plans for the new campaign. However, Koscielny clearly has no desire to stay. It is a sad end to what had otherwise been an impressive Premier League career.
However, Emery’s attention must now turn solely to replacing the 51-cap France international. Arsenal’s defence is in great need of improvements. Bringing in a new defender before the transfer window closes will soothe fans’ frustration with the current situation.
Many Arsenal fans took to Twitter following the announcement of Koscielny’s exit to share their thoughts on the matter.
Thanks for all the memories Kos. pic.twitter.com/dTpamtX1Ia
— P™ | (was @cechque) (@SemperFiArsenal) August 6, 2019
This day just keeps getting better
— Toby (@ftbltoby) August 6, 2019
Thierry Henry Knee Slide in my bedroom
Now replace him with Upamecano
— Elliot 👑 (@LacaSweat) August 6, 2019
Good luck lolo @6_LKOSCIELNY ♥️👍🏻
— Invincibles49 (Kroenke Out) (@BadboysLacaAuba) August 6, 2019
Cool he ruined his legacy
— ™️ (@EmeryBallEra) August 6, 2019
Good luck and all the best @6_LKOSCIELNY. Shame it ended the way it did.
— AFCAMDEN (@AFCAMDEN) August 6, 2019
All banter aside… Despite your recent actions, you were still very good for us over the years. Respect and Merci Lolo👊🏼 pic.twitter.com/mfRkhoAF6J
— Bhavs (@bhavss14) August 6, 2019
It’s a shame he acted so unprofessional. I should be here watching a complication of his best moments in an Arsenal shirt, but instead I’m happy he’s leaving and glad with the way the club handled his behaviour.
— Craige Liquorish (@CraigeLiquorish) August 6, 2019