In the tumultuous transfer landscape of big names being floated around like candy at a carnival, Francis Coquelin’s inclusion has come by surprise for many. Not because he’s a big name by any stretch, but because he hasn’t been on the radar, understandably so.
A tweet from Spanish media suggest that Valencia and Arsenal are in ‘talks’ over the acquisition of The Coq.
Coq Off For Spain?
— SER Deportivos Valen (@SERDepValencia) January 8, 2018
In an interview with Arsenal.com recently, manager Arsene Wenger had this to say on his compatriot:
“He is 100 per cent professional, Francis, and an example for everybody, and all the young players. Life has been a bit unfair with him, it’s true. That’s also down a bit to our change in system – he paid a heavy price for that – but overall he’s in a very good shape. We’ll have games, many games now, so that will help him keep his focus and maintain his quality at a very high level.”
Yet for a club that fielded a now astonishingly poor line-up against Nottingham Forest, perhaps more fist-waving could have done some good. That was not to be as the club were allowed to wilt under the unnerving pressure of playing a mid-table Championship side.
For a short time several seasons back, Coquelin was the toast of North London. A hard-tackling, no-nonsense figure standing bravely in front of whatever centre backs were doled out in a particular match. He was the gargoyle we all came to love.
We’ll have to see if rumour becomes reality, but certainly his time as a starter at Arsenal has long since passed him by. It’s also not lost on fans that the clubs have done business together recently with Gabriel and Shkodran Mustafi moving between the two.
The Mirror are also reporting the deal is close:
— Mirror Football (@MirrorFootball) January 8, 2018
Main image credit:
Embed from Getty Images