Coquelin thanks the fans – “Arsenal will always be in my heart”

So it is farewell to Francis Coquelin, who has been at Arsenal for nine years since being found by Gilles Grimandi as a 17 year-old in a small town in the west of France. He is now still only 26 and Valencia will be a new journey for Francis, but he insists that part of him will always still be with Arsenal and he couldn’t leave without sending a heartfelt message to the fans. “I just want to thank them because I was at the club for a very long time. I always showed passion for the club and they all saw that in me, so I want to thank them for their support.

“I understand what they feel – their love for the club, I understand that. I was at Arsenal for nine years and it was like a second family to me. I understand the frustration when the results are not going well. We had an honest relationship and the fans have always been amazing towards me. It’s been great.

“Coming to Arsenal at such a young age, from a small club, it was a massive step for me. I would say that Arsenal raised me as a player, but also raised me as a man. I owe a lot to Arsenal, it has been nine years of my life and I will never forget it. But obviously I am moving on to a new challenge, a new club and my first impressions are very good so I am expecting another really good time.

“My first year was amazing, winning the FA Youth Cup in 2009, then coming back from my loan at Charlton I thought I wasn’t going to play for Arsenal, but I am happy I had the chance to show what I can do. I had a couple of great seasons starting every game. Winning the FA Cup [in 2015] was special.

“It was incredible. My loan at Charlton gave me a lot of confidence to come back with a lot of energy and I think you saw that in the first game I came back and played in. Obviously the win at Manchester City was huge and we went on to win a lot of games, finishing in the top three and winning the FA Cup, so it was an unbelievable six months. A year later we finished second, but we should have done more, we should have been at the end for the title, but to come back and do what I did was a special moment.

“I will obviously still follow the club and I am at a big club now, Valencia is a big club and the expectation is here as well, but after nine years you cannot forget about your club and Arsenal is always going to be in my heart, I will always follow them.”

Coquelin couldn’t go without thanking Arsene Wenger, who has been such a large influence on his life. “I owe him so much, he is the one who played me at this level. To play someone who comes from such a small club and give his trust as he did, I will always respect him as someone really important in my career. I am where I am today because of what he has done, and my work as well, but if your manager doesn’t play you, you cannot express yourself and he is the one who gave me that chance. I am really grateful for that and I wish him all the very best.”

Goodbye Francis, and the very best luck for the future at your new club….



  1. Simon says:

    Good luck Coq. You have the heart and soul we need more of

    I wish you well

  2. John Wick says:

    Average player tbh should of gone years ago but that’s one of the many problems at this club, but the main thing is Kroenke will pocket the transfer fee and Wenger will get his bonus! On that very topic the very long serving boss has stated he has no intention of walking away from his highly inflated and overpaid contact! Apparently Mr Wenger doesn’t walk away from contracts and always will do what’s best for the interest of the club! Really? Well the club is in obvious decline, results are as bad as they’ve ever been not to mention the Ozil, Sanchez contract situation.. Gazidis once said Arsene is accountable to the fans well that’s another lie Arsene is only accountable to himself he does not care less about the fans his ego is 3 Emirates sizes bigger than the fans! Stating last season if he’s the problem then he’s sorry! So basically he kind of acknowledges he’s part of the problem but he’s still going nowhere.. dear god I don’t know what it’s gonna take to remove this man from the club but one thing is for sure he will never walk out and seems will never be sacked no matter how bad we get.. looks like we fans must get used to having a manager over 70 in the very near future. Exciting times!

  3. Phil says:

    Player with very limited ability but always gave it his all and never ever hid when backs were against the wall.A club the size of Arsenal should not miss Coq. A certain AMN is the future

    1. arie82 says:

      His pure dm, only good play in 1 position, his main job is defend, nothing else.
      Compare to iwobi, who can play as left winger, right winger, am, cm, but never good in any position. and lazy one to.

      1. Dubgun says:

        Lazy!!!!! Never. Talking put yer A#se!

  4. McLov says:

    Top lad! Better than Elneny. Valencia might just play in the CL next season and likely we won’t, so Coquelin is definitely quality player shown by Valencia interest.

    Sad that true Gunners like Coq and Sczesny have been sold for peanuts.

  5. Break-on-through says:

    Would love to get Dybala if Alexis leaves this month, great replacement. And bring in Draxler with him. A CDM and a CB with these two is minimum need.

    1. Goonerboy says:


      Yes it excites me to imagine certain players in n Arsenal shirt but you get the feeling that they may waste away and not really affect the team the way you might have expected due to Wenger’s influence

      Like I always say, there are certain players that can fit into Wenger’s philosophy but he fails to get those kinda players IMHO
      Players that have excellent technicality ala Cazorla both in defence, midfield and attack especially midfield so the failure is in identifying and getting the right players for the system

      So what am saying is I don’t try to fantasize or dream of players that when they finally get here may not have much of an influence and we will be right where we are
      Xhaka and maybe Mustafi comes to mind…

  6. Me says:

    Like rats leaving a sinking ship.
    Players being sold.
    Players coming to the end of their contracts and leaving on a free.
    No rebuilding.
    Looks to me like a business being running down to liquidation.
    Anyone who claims to be an Arsenal supporter should be very worried.
    Didn’t the same thing happen at Monaco when he was there?

    1. jon fox says:

      Me, In all tragic seriousness you have hit the nail on the head, with your correct but deeply depressing truths about Wenger and the club. All available evidence looks like Wenger is conducting a fire sale, best players let go for next to nothing, dross kept , unused and unwanted. Sabotage and deliberate ,it looks like to me.

  7. Goonerboy says:

    For me, we have wasted Coquelin as I believe he is best in the DM position.
    We have always said we needed a tackler, a no nonsense DM that is always busy breaking up okay and setting up attacks immediately. Coquelin has all these attributes plus a captain quality.

    But Wenger wants him to be what he is not and since then he has been below par.
    If you want an outstanding box to box player go to the market and pay for one and not trying to convert players anyhow.
    Ramsey remains our best box to box player but he is not consistent and fit enough.
    Anyway, good bye Coquelin and I wish you a rediscovery of yourself.

    1. Wesley says:

      100% Correct. But for some reason Wenger doesn’t like playing DMs and Wenger attempted to convert him to a box 2 box. Fair to say it didn’t work out. Not his fault at all cos he is one the best DMs around.

  8. Ian wrights bruva says:

    I liked la couq but he was out of depth and lacked the real quality we need. On a positive he gave his all and tried hard for the team, you can’t knock a man for trying. That being said Wenger was right to move him on, we would do well do the same with Theo, a player I use to love but seems to have lost his edge, doesn’t play to his strenght (his pace) and lacks a good final ball. Surely Wenger has done a good thing by moving him on we have to many ok players. Let’s hope that we get some fresh new talent in now we appear to be moving on some average players. I have been obviously we need a new dm and a replacement for Sanchez who basically left the club in the summer after his failed move to city. Wenger needs to proves his doubters wrong and invest in some quality.

  9. ruelando says:

    The only player at arsenal who was a true DM, sad to see him go, i hope he has better success at Valencia

  10. Arsenogenic says:

    Not good enough? No wonder Valencia are inserting a top dollar buyout clause in his new contract. They are third in the Last Legs the last time I checked.

    They must need someone to drag them down a bit. So they came in for Coquelin. What a move!

  11. Arsenogenic says:

    La Liga, I meant to say, not Last Leg. The evil of auto correct.

  12. Peterhos says:

    Check out Coquelin’s time at Charlton, he did not set the world on fire. How did he come back to Arsenal and be invaluable for a time? It proves what the team was and is still lacking!

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