In a week that saw Arsenal wrap up their first January deal in Mohamed Elneny, some more transfer speculation has risen following the weekends action.
After speaking with the French media during the week, it appears that Laurent Koscielny could have easily waved goodbye to the Gunners on multiple occasions.
The 30-year-old confirmed that in recent years he has been approached by several clubs, all desperate for his services after being recognised as one of the best defenders in the Premier League.
However, despite all of the money and global interest that comes with these deals, the French international turned his head at any chance to leave the Emirates.
Whilst talking to Journal du Dimanche, Koscielny admitted that after his switch to North London in 2010, he’s never had any interest in walking away from Arsenal.
For the moment, I have no reason to go anywhere else. I have all that I need to thrive here. I have had contacts (with other clubs), but I always asked myself if it was worth taking the risk.
I have seen a fair amount of players leave for a bigger club just to find themselves on the bench.
At the start of my career, I was often on the bench. I hated it. I told myself: never again. I made risky choices: by leaving Guingamp for Tours, in the National [3rd division], I did not know where I was going. But I knew that I had the abilities for Ligue 1.
It’s believed some of the clubs after Koscielny’s signature included Real Madrid and Barcelona, two clubs desperate for defenders after a number of their veterans were forced out.
At the time, the Frenchman was at his peak and looked as if he would fit in at any team following a number of standout performances with an under-achieving Gunners side.
Of course we now know that Koscielny was right to stick to his judgement and strive to achieve his goal of being Arsenal’s first choice defender on the team-sheet every week.
At his age now it looks as if the centre back won’t have a chance to make a big money move anywhere else, and Gunners fans would love him to see out his career at Arsenal.
Since linking up with Arsene Wenger’s side, Koscielny has racked up 166 appearances and found the net on 14 occasions, with his winner over Newcastle being a highlight already this season.
And despite the Frenchman picking up a formidable partnership with Per Mertesacker, we should expect the younger Gabriel Paulista to be teaming up with him very soon.
The Brazilian is just 25 years old and has already shown his capability of filling in at the back when the rotation was required, much to the appreciation of the supporters.
It certainly looks like our defence is finally finding some form this season, and with the safe hands of Petr Cech in behind them a lot of pressure has been taken away this campaign.
Do you think Arsenal need more reinforcements in defence? Who would you bring in when Mertesacker retires in the next few years? Let us know by commenting below!