Posted on Monday, 10th September 2012 by The Goon
Understandably, the young French midfielder is growing a little restless at the lack of first-team opportunities and it’s great to see that he wants to make a name for himself at Arsenal, but he must remain patient.
Coquelin was rewarded with a new long-term contract at the start of the year and managed to make 17 appearances for our side last season. Prior to this, in the 2010-11 season, the France Under-21 international was loaned out to FC Lorient in order to gain experience and I must say it helped his cause, a lot.
Everton, Aston Villa and QPR were all rumoured to be interested in his services this summer, but the 21-year-old opted to stay at Arsenal, at least for the time being, as he was reportedly assured by Wenger that he would feature in his plans this campaign.
Then Alex Song left for Barcelona, which boosted Coquelin’s chances of first-team opportunities.
However, with Abou Diaby back, Mikel Arteta now a regular and Santi Cazorla a given in the side due to his creative spark, the young Frenchman finds himself in the same predicament as he was in last term.
Quoted recently on Sky Sports, he said:
‘In July, I met the coach and he told me I am a full member of the team and he relies on me. Looking at who we have signed, they have trust in me.
‘Alex Song left for Barcelona and they didn’t (sign) another defensive midfielder.
‘When I didn’t play in the first three matches it made me think about it. But I know I will get an opportunity and I will seize it.
‘Arteta, Diaby and Cazorla are great players, who have more experience than me. But during training sessions every morning I am not behind them.’
He went onto say:
‘I am 21-years-old, I know I cannot be patient any more. This year is the right season to make a name for myself at Arsenal.
‘I have given myself six months and then I will take stock. If I see it is blocked, I will go somewhere else. But for now I know I have the qualities to make a name for myself at Arsenal.’
I can understand his frustration, I really can. But he needs to be patient. His opportunity to shine will come.
While Abou Diaby has done well so far this season, an injury is almost certainly around the corner, especially when you consider his history on the treatment table.
Aside from coming in when players sustain injuries or pick up suspensions, we need squad depth, especially in the winter. This will be the time where Coquelin WILL receive game time.
Apart from operating in midfield, Coquelin also has a shot as get game time in the left or right-back position, as he proved last season he is more than capable of playing in this role.
All I’m saying is we could do with some squad depth and players like Coquelin stepping in when first-teamers are unavailable.
It’s not always about what the player wants, it’s what’s good for the club that matters, and I believe for Wenger’s best interest it would be wise to not let Coquelin leave on loan this summer, as he does have a significant role to play for our side this season.
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