Everything Laurent Koscielny has said about Arsenal since shirt swap exit video

Earlier this month, Laurent Koscielny finally apologised for that video which signalled the end of his time at Arsenal, and his relationship with the fans.

Koscielny caused a huge stir 18 months ago following his move to Bordeaux as his announcement video featured the Frenchman removing an Arsenal shirt to unveil that of his new club.

Understandably, many Gunners supporters were furious with the Frenchman, who was still their captain until his shock departure.

Ian Wright and David Seaman were among those to label him “disrespectful” and called the clip “disgusting”.

But what has Koscielny said himself about why he decided to leave the club and in the manner that he did?

In October 2018 the veteran centre-back revealed that he felt it was now or never for him to get out at Arsenal after nine years in north London.

“A Premier League season is very long,” he told L’Equipe. “It requires a lot physically and mentally. I didn't feel I could play 40-50 matches and I did not want to end my career with injuries. I have gone down a level, but to take more pleasure.

“Either I finished [my career] there or changed clubs. With my family, we felt it was time. Everything was in my thinking: football, my physical state, my wife, my children, the daily life we could have.

“I can only say that I left with my head held high. All of those I worked with for nine years… everyone respected my decision to return home with my family.”

The following month Koscielny admitted that he understood fans’ frustrations and offered his support to the team, shortly before Unai Emery was sacked.

“I can understand that Arsenal fans did not expect me to leave,” he told Canal+.

“Nobody expected it. To put it simply, I was not happy as I was on the first day I signed. And with my family, we needed to go back to France and have a new challenge.

“I'm happy for Aubameyang, and for his role as captain.

“I wish them all the best, even if they are in a difficult period. But this is where we see a team and a collective ready to fight together and bounce back.”

And finally in December 2020, Koscielny gave Arsenal fans what they’ve all been waiting for – an apology.

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“I had nine incredible years there, lots of memories with this club,” he told the French media.

“I know that my announcement video at Bordeaux caused a bit of a stir, I want to apologise to the fans for that.

“I didn’t expect it to affect them in the way that it did.”

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