Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says the club have offered Francis Coquelin a new contract as reward for his fine form in recent weeks.
“Yes, we have offered him a new deal. I am confident that it will be done.”
Arsene Wenger to the official website.
Coquelin has been with us since the age of 16, but while he initially showed great promise, it’s fair to say he didn’t quite kick on – though that may be due to occasionally being deployed out of position at full back.
Loan spells to FC Lorient, SC Freiburg followed before a return to Emirates Stadium, and and Coquelin then made his Premier League debut in the infamous 8-2 defeat to Manchester United.
He had to wait a long time for another chance, but after another loan spell at Charlton Athletic this term, injuries to Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini this season ensured he finally earned an opportunity to impress in his favoured position.
It’s safe to say he’s taken it. His performance against Manchester City was absolutely superb, and the intelligent positioning at the base of our midfield was something the fans have been crying out for in big games for perhaps five years or more.
With his contract set to expire in the summer, it’s fair to say that pinning Coquelin down to a new deal has become a top priority – as Wenger concurs.
“I saw that he made huge improvements in training and I explained to him that for me to give him a potential chance, he needed match practice. I could not give him that, I could give him that only if he played somewhere else before. He took the challenge, he came back and since I have played him, he is doing well.”