‘Arsene Wenger has taken a gamble on me’
Laurent Koscielny was interviewed by Emery Taisne from L’Équipe today on his switch from FC Loreint to Arsenal which was finally confirmed on Wednesday.
In Koscielny’s conversation with the French newspaper, he admitted that his signing is a gamble by Wenger and the centre-back also did not hide the fact that playing for the Gunners will increase his chances of winning caps for France.
The 24-year-old spoke on several interesting topics – from how he was first contacted by Arsenal and his future on the international level with either Poland or France.
Laurent Koscielny, you’re a Gunner. What are your impressions?
It’s another world! When you see the training center and the stadium it’s really huge. Here there is everything to think only about football. At first, I confess that I did not realize it much, but now it’s been a week since I returned, everyone puts me at ease. I’m back down to earth. This is only my transfer. The goal now is to play.
Since when have you been in contact with Arsenal?
Just after our match in Lille, around 18-19 May. Even though I knew it was not a joke, I was really surprised that Arsenal could be interested in a Lorient player, with just one season of Ligue 1 experience. In my head, it was clear I had to go there. A chance like this, comes maybe only once in your whole career. I did not want to miss it.
Arsene Wenger has taken a gamble on me.
The transfer took some time to finalize. Did you fear that it would not happen?
Not too much. Lorient leaders wanted a lot of money, but they also knew that Arsenal were determined to make the move. They could not really stop the transfer in the end.
What did Arsene Wenger say on your arrival?
He knew my qualities, and they had acknowledged it was a gamble on me. Even though I have no pressure, I know that I’ll have to progress a lot. The daily trainings with international players will help me.
Three years ago, you were not near this level. What is your perspective on your career so far?
It is strange. Things happen fast in football. When I moved from Guingamp to Tours in 2007, I never imagined I would go so high. And I hope it does not finish here.
At one point there was talk that you would represent Poland. How is the national team situation?
I have not thought too much about it, but in my mind, I am French. Les Bleus? I think it’s possible, but if I do not play at Arsenal, it will be difficult to be selected there. This is also why the priority is to win here. If I do, why not expect a selection for France?