Search

Liverpool v Arsenal: Koscielny back from cup final heartbreak

PUBLISHED: 17:01 26 August 2017 | UPDATED: 17:01 26 August 2017

Laurent Koscielny is available once again for Arsenal after suspension (pic John Walton/PA)

Laurent Koscielny is available once again for Arsenal after suspension (pic John Walton/PA)

PA Archive/PA Images

Laurent Koscielny will start the long journey of putting his FA Cup final heartbreak behind him when he returns from suspension for Arsenal on Sunday.

The France international defender has missed the opening two Premier League games of the campaign after being sent off in the final league fixture of last season against Everton.

His dismissal against the Toffees also saw him ruled out of the FA Cup final victory over Chelsea – as Arsene Wenger’s side lifted the trophy for a record 13th time despite being depleted in defence.

Koscielny has been overlooked throughout pre-season as Wenger needed to give game-time to those who were available for the games against Leicester and Stoke.

But, after losing 1-0 against the latter last weekend, the Arsenal boss is keen to reintroduce his compatriot for Sunday’s trip to Liverpool.

“We lost the game on Saturday because defensively we gave a cheap goal away, and it’s good to have him back,” he said.

“It’s been very hard, because I didn’t even consider him for friendly games, you know, because I had to play some defenders.

“I think what hurt him a lot was to miss the cup final. He had a reaction in the final game of the season against Everton that was unlucky.

“He’s a very quiet guy and sometimes he can get rushed because he realises, he thinks always he has the speed and the pace to win the tackle; in this case he didn’t.”

Koscielny’s timely return to a defence which has shipped four goals in two Premier League games will be overshadowed if Alexis Sanchez is also reintroduced into the Arsenal side at Anfield.

The Chile forward has not featured this season due to a combination of illness and an abdominal injury.

Reports continue to link Sanchez with a move away from the Emirates Stadium as he has less than a year to run on his contract and with Wenger admitting no progress has been made on the former Barcelona man signing a fresh deal.

But Wenger has no qualms playing Sanchez despite the uncertainty over his future and believes his return can boost his team-mates.

“We are disappointed by our result on Saturday but we are not down,” he said.

“It is the first game we lost since the beginning of April and we feel we should have largely won this game.

“Alexis, when he is in the squad, he can score a goal for you at that is always good for morale.

“He wants to play. Alexis works for hard and is focused to play. I think what is good is our mutual interest is that he does well for us.

“His interest is to do well, on top of that I deeply feel that he loves to be here and he loves the club and he arrives at a stage of 28, 29 and looks at the quality of his contract but I think he deeply loves to be here.

“In a professional job I always think that you have to make sure with your commitment that the guy who pays you gets what he is paying you for.

“Alexis is in that mode and I think he will be until the last day he is here, he will give his best.

“To play them or not, no, I don’t consider their contractual situation to decide who plays and who doesn’t play.”

Arsenal found out their Europa League opponents on Friday, with Red Star Belgrade of Serbia, Belarus outfit BATE Borisov and Cologne of Germany drawn alongside Wenger’s side in Group H.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Islington Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Islington Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Islington Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Islington Sports News

Yesterday, 08:00

In an article from our ‘Year in Sport’ pullout, the other teams in the Six Nations have their chances previewed

Wed, 18:30

Everton have completed the signing of Theo Walcott from Arsenal in a deal worth £20 million on a three-and-a-half year contract.

Wed, 12:59

Islington Boxing Club’s future in the borough is guaranteed after it agreed a long-term lease with the council.

Tue, 12:36

Arsenal forward Theo Walcott is set to sign for Everton in a deal understood to be worth around £20 million.

Arsenal’s U23s produced an electric display to thrash Manchester United’s U23 side on Monday night, with Konstantinos Mavropanos making a solid first appearance in red and white amongst a strong Gunners team.

A strong Arsenal U23 side eased past a young Manchester United U23 side at Meadow Park on Monday evening. Read Layth Yousif’s player ratings as new first team signing Konstantinos Mavropanos made his first start for the club with hot-shot starlet Eddie Nketiah grabbing a brace as they joined a number of players who impressed.

Mon, 17:25

If you supported Arsenal or had an N5 postcode in 1988, it’s almost certain you’ll remember the “Battle of Highbury”.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Arsenal scored two late goals to overcome a tough Reading side and reach the FA WSL Continental Tyres Cup final.

PROMOTED CONTENT

“With teenagers there’s a lot of banter, and you can really establish a relationship. You have to trust teenagers to make their own decisions.”

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read sport

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now