Wenger confident of Coquelin deal


Arsene Wenger is confident that Francis Coquelin will sign a new deal at Arsenal having begun negotiations with the Frenchman.

The 23-year-old is out of contract at the end of the season and had been expected to leave the Emirates having spent two of the last four seasons out on loan at Lorient and Freiburg respectively.

However, in light of his impressive form since returning from a short spell at Charlton – ended prematurely due to the Gunners’ injury crisis in December – the defensive midfielder will be given the chance to stay and fight for a regular first team place.

Speaking about Coquelin’s recent renaissance, Wenger told his pre-Brighton press conference: “I saw that he made huge improvements in training and I explained to him that for me to give him a potential chance, he needed match practice.

“I could not give him that, I could give him that only if he played somewhere else before. He took the challenge [at Charlton], he came back and since I have played him, he is doing well.

Asked if this ‘internal solution’ could prove to be the long-term answer to Arsenal’s well-documented ‘need’ for a defensive midfielder, Wenger continued:

“Yes, of course. He is a very young player. You look just at what happens on the pitch. Win the ball and make a good pass, in his position that is important.

“We have offered him a new deal. I am confident that it will be done.”

Fair play to the lad. That is an impressively swift turnaround in his fortunes. Let’s hope the deal gets done quickly.

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76 Comments on "Wenger confident of Coquelin deal"

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“Wenger’s Coq puts ink to paper”


Wenger inks Le Coq?


Wenger to negotiate deal with Coq.


“Wenger ties Coq down.”

Nacho de Montreal is tasty
Nacho de Montreal is tasty

Extension of coq jokes for 4 years if Coquelin signs ? No please, I will not be able to endure. Guys, get your own c.. busy instead, and when you are finished, come here to write meaningful comments about Arsenal.


I will never tire of Coq jokes and I don’t mind admitting it!

Don’t be…. hard-on Coq… jokers – we can’t help it!

Finsbury Park Gooner

Wengers Coq gets an extension…


I have to say, you benefited from the appalling Coq jokes above – I’m not a fan of Coq jokes but yours brought a smile to my face after scrolling down the pathetic ones above.

Well done Finsbury Park Gooner, well done.

Finsbury Park Gooner

I was left with a tap-in at the far post


Thank Bergkamp you’re not Falcao.


Or Soldado.


“Wenger intent to hold on to Coq”

Goonie Goo Goo

If (when) Coq signs, what colour will his ink be tho?


Vital to keep him now (who would have thought that a few months ago?) but I hope we still go out and sign a Schneiderlin or similar this summer. With Arteta, Flamini and Diaby all set to expire at the end of the season, maybe Bielik, Coquelin LANS and the ‘OMG AN ACTUAL DM’ can be adequate replacements. More defensive minded than the former trio as well, helping restore some balance to the team.


There are murmurs that Arteta has already signed a contract extension but it hasn’t been announced yet. So I think he will be here next year.

Arteta is 33 in March, Flamini is 31 in March, and Coquelin is 23. The contracts of all three expire this summer. We really are approaching a crossroads in terms of our deep central midfield. If I was the manager, I would do the following:

1) Extend Arteta’s contract by 1 year. He’s an injury risk and lacks pace in his aging years, but if he can stay fit he is a very useful option to say the least. Perfect for our play, can do a great job against most opposition teams, and is a leader.

2) Sign a 1st choice deep central midfielder. I want this one to be our marquee signing of the summer. As it stands at this very moment, despite a handful of excellent performances, one cannot yet say that Coquelin is the future of our deep central midfield. I wouldn’t rule out the possibility, but if you were given a choice to buy a top class, first choice holding midfielder now, or never, you’d buy one now. Even if you like Coquelin, like me. So I’d look for someone in between the ages of Arteta and Coquelin, around 27-28, at the peak of their powers, to come straight in and do an immediate job, help Coquelin develop and release an ageing Arteta from the demands of playing every 4 days.

3) Release Flamini. I don’t think this is at all controversial. He’s not lost it, good player, well disciplined and has clearly been working on his passing. He has served the club well in both stints. But I would prefer Arteta to play the 3rd choice DM role as, simply put, he is better than Flamini and Flamini would be surplus to requirements if we kept Arteta AND brought a high quality DM in.

Kanu's big toe

Well said!


you wouldn’t keep Flamini as a squad player? I’m sure he would sign for pretty cheap and doesn’t complain about riding the pine too much.


Fair point. But I do think that having Coquelin, Arteta, [New DM] and Bielik AS WELL AS Flamini would be slight overkill. One of them has got to go in my scenario, and that has to be Flamini. If Wenger decided to stick with Coquelin as the 1st choice DM (and not buy a new DM) then the case to keep Flamini would be much stronger.

Red Cannon

If he came for very cheap, I’d be fine with that. But I’d rather have my 4th choice DM be a young up-and-comer than someone who has seen the best of his career already. And we haven’t even brought up Chambers or Hayden yet as other options. …I suspect we’re going to be letting Flamini go. I was glad to have him with us again– especially last season– but onward & upward.


Don’t forget the squad limits (25 for PL). We can’t have unlimited players (unless they’re 21).

Amrit Singh

That simply won’t happen because Wenger will keep both arteta and flamini next season unless something drastic happens. Also, who is a world class defensive midfielder in the market that we could sign?

Anonymous Physicist

Totally agreed. For the people who say we should keep Flamini as well: consider the 25-man squad limit. And consider that keeping around a senior player who (almost) never gets to play is probably detrimental to the atmosphere in the squad.

Another reason to keep Arteta would be that playing him together with Coquelin or a new defensive midfielder may provide a valuable option at times. And that in some games, for example when looking for a goal against a lesser defensive minded team, Arteta may be preferable to a ‘true’ DM.


Hm very good analysis,objectively there’s nothing to argue with it. Subjectively i’d be quite sad to see Flamini go, there’s no one else who tackles with this raw brutality at Arsenal.
As long as chelski, spuds and stoke are not relegated i think there’s always a few games where he and his crunching tackles are sorely need 😉


I agree on all (well made) points @Smart_Arse..

S. Rooks

I did. Cant believe he was written off to be honest, despite his sleight figure previously he was usually strong in the tackle and measured in his distribution witha a decent range of pass.

Glad hes now added power and tenacity (towards both our players and theirs) He may be a key player in years to come.

Id like to think Arsene saw him after his loan spells and said “coq my how youve grown.”


“Vital to keep him now (who would have thought that a few months ago?)”

Yeah, makes you wonder about Wenger -it takes an injury crisis to realize he has a good player on his hands. Gone are the days when young players really get a chance at Arsenal.

If Coq signs, and with Bielik coming in, forget about signing a marquee DM in the summer, unless it is apparent that Bielik is not good enough.


I wholeheartedly agree, Wenger just doesn’t have an eye for youngsters anymore. Apart from that Chambers kid. And that Oxlade-Chamberlain boy. And that fella Bellerin. And the Zelalem kid who debuted last year. And that Hayden guy. And that kid Gnabry. He’s just all round awful at youth, that Arsene Wenger.

Giroud Awakening

Let’s be honest, Flamini and Arteta are in the home straight of their Arsenal careers. Even if Coquelin signs, I still think we need to buy another quality DM, in Schneiderlin or whoever it is.

Alright Mate

Schneiderlen has Wanyama behind him, so I expect he would more be competing with Ramsey at Arsenal rather than Coquelin?

Dick Swiveller

They could probably play together, so it wouldn’t necessarily be one or the other, but ultimately Rambo/Wilshere and maybe the Ox would be competing for one of those spots so I think it would mostly be Coq or Schneiderlin.


I thought similar, until Sky put up a statistic that in the last two years he has the highest number of both tackles and interceptions in the league. Friends of mine who watch him more often than I do think he’s absolutely incredible; even a Chelsea fan said he’s “scared” of us signing him, he rates him that highly. I still think, however, they’re going to get Champions League ahead of United, who are soon going to be showed up for how truly shit they are. In which case can honestly see him staying.


Who are you talking about, Mc1892?

Rosicky's Little Toe

Yep, they’ve rolled out Schneiderlin’s stats every transfer window for at least the last 2 years and it’s amazed me each time Southampton held on to him. If he stays in the same league, I hope it’s with us.

Jamaican Gooner

Schneiderlin is not box to box tho wanyama is actually .. Schneiderlin is actually the CDM in that partnership a lot of ppl don’t know that wanyama is a true CM because he’s so strong in a tackle been watching him since is Celtic days.. He might have developed more as a defensive player now but to be true neither of the attack much for Southampton that’s why theyre defensive record is so great..

Mr. G

I agree. Neither are quite good enough to play DM for Arsenal, and it won’t make me happy if Coquelin is dropped for Arteta when he returns.
Unsure about Schneiderlin. Seems to have an inflated opinion of himself (hardly rare at Southampton; see Lovren, Lallana etc.) and before this season I’d have said he’s not good enough. Like blokey above me said, he benefits from playing alongside another defence-minded midfielder in Wanyama.


Hey you gays, what about Chambers? He could end up at DM. Early days, and all that.


chambers wants to be a CB and I think he will be one.


I love how he starts his sentences.


Chambers should develop into Mertesackers eventual replacement.


I think this is truly LANS – so far he seems a completely different player. His positional play was excellent against City, and he really does have a bite to his tackles. Let’s just hope he keeps up the hard work and continues to make progress. Sign him up!

Dick Swiveller

It’s the positioning that gets me, he’s always had a fair bit of energy to burn and been willing to tackle but now that he is using all that smartly, it’s helped him (and us, of course) out immensely.


Coq has done brilliantly since coming back. The guy can not only shield the back 4 well with his athleticism, tenacity and positioning discipline, but can also release the ball FORWARD quickly with calmness. If he can keep this level until the end of the season then well, we have our new DM. A brand new Coq! Our other 2 are too old and small with flapping dicks.

Thierry Walcott

Remember he also is a good commander of ‘Shut the fuck up!’ to opponent cunts, we saw it the other week.


I get goosebumps when I watch that vine!


Prepare for moar coq block!

paddy gunn

Was Coq brought here through Dick Law?

Will Dick Law be awarded with a share of the outgoings from Le Coq?

Will there be a long feeling out process for le Coq before this comes to a climax?

Stay tuned to see if Le Coq Spits in Wengers face!

oyedotun olanrewaju akeem

The true aspect of it is just to make Coq retains DM position! Let him gains more from Arteta or Flamini till they expire, that was how Ex-song expires!

Thierry Walcott

Get in!!!


Wenger Hangs on to His Coq? Wenger Ties Down His Coq? Arsenal Have Coq in Hand? Wenger Confident of His Coq Getting the Job Done?

Finsbury Park Gooner

‘Wenger Ties Down His Coq’ made me laugh so hard I spilled soup all over my desk.

Actual soup. Not man soup.


I’m happy for him to sign and fight for a first team place, however, I think it is clear we need the best we can buy/find in that position as first choice. Let’s hope Wenger does something about that in the summer.


What if Francis proves himself in that position? He’s done it against City, what if he does it against Chelsea’s Matic and Cesc? Or against Bayern or Madrid? Would you still want a new DM then?

Or are people so hung up on a new DM toy that no matter what Coquelin does, they’ll still want their new buy fix?


Maybe its the notation that people have about the DM role. Everyone these days expect the team’s defensive midfielder to be this tall powerful beast of a player. But positional sense and tactical no how is just as much if not more important. Makelele wasnt 6 feet+ tall was he? But he was immense as a DM. And Lahm for Bayern now is also quite efficient as a DM.

Red Cannon

Yup. I’m with you. It’s not just Makalele & Lahm that have been great DMs that aren’t terribly big. Edgar Davids, Didier Deschamps, & Gennaro Gattuso also come to mind. I’d take any of them on my team, quite happily.


Height is the most overrated “ability” in the game in my opinion. Sure, it helps, but even at CB it’s not at all vital. Just look at Cannavaro.

Alexis's Ox

I agree. What about Mascherano? And, if you are of my vintage, Nobby Stiles?


Good mentions. Lahm is one of the best DM I’ve seen played, and certainly the most intelligent player in terms of reading the game. Even Pep said that. If Coq can learn to do that in his game then his height is not a problem.

Dick Swiveller

Well, Arteta is old and Flamini has looked a little clapped out this season; we need more than one DM so a new one should be bought in the summer.


We are top 6 richest club in the world we deserve two incredible dms, we deserve to go to 4 comps with them rotating like every other top club in the world does. Look at bayern, city and Chelsea’s DMs. That is the standard and with coq coming through we need a world class DM to suppliment. Push the bar up mate we are not Tottenham and even they have international playing dms


It’s slightly ironic that you make the comment about being 6th richest just today, when the Deloitte money league was published, but no, we are not.


Are we? I thought we are eighth for the second year running.

God is Bergkamp, Bergkamp is God
God is Bergkamp, Bergkamp is God

I think the biggest concern is it would be Coquelin and Arteta and then who? I don’t expect us to keep Flamini and Bielik is probably not going to be ready, while Callum has showed there but is clearly more of a CB which I guess we can’t complain about too much. With the injuries we’ve had, and for the sake of keeping those boys on their toes, it seems pretty reasonable to buy a quality player to compete for a starting job


good points Stillmatic. I just want to urge you to stop using Fabregas’ first name. We are not on a first name basis with him anymore. Whatever people think about the past, he plays for a leading opponent now, and that’s the end of that. Thanks for the memories Cesc, but you are now Fabregas, we have moved on.


Coq has caught everyone by suprise..hes turning to be such a good player..i hope our DM problems are a thing of the past now..another master-stroke by Wenger..thats why he will leave when he wants n feels like it


On what we have seen so far, there is less chance of heart in mouth till end of the season. DM is not as life saving at the moment. Reinforcements can wait until the summer window. Defence is the critical need at this point…

My name is my name

I think it’s ridiculous to say ‘yeah Coq’s been great but we still need to buy the worlds best DM’. No, we really do not? It’s perfectly clear that our Coq fits perfectly in this team, and he is doing exactly what we all wanted our DM to do. What is is that buying someone for 30mil are going to get us, that the Coq can’t? Let’s put that money elsewhere. If we would’ve signed Coq this window for 20mil, everyone would say that we finally have our DM, but just because he didn’t cost anything, people act like he’s still nothing but a squad rotation player.

He’s playing like a 20mil man atm and if he keeps this up for the rest of the season, he is my choice for starting DM when the next season kicks in.


Pretty much my point, said so much better.


Would love it if he signs the extension but wouldn’t be surprised if he waits to see what other teams are willing to offer. Hope Arsene can convince him that he will be a part of the first team for the foreseeable future. That said we can focus on getting a DM in the summer. Hope we know what we are doing with the Gabriel lad because it would be very Arsenalasque if the lad fails to get a work permit and we are left with egg on our face come the end of the transfer window.

Man Manny

The plan has to be that Flamini goes at the end of the season; Coquelin replaces him and we keep Arteta for one more season while Krystian Bielik continues to develop. After that, we sign one to replace Arteta while Bielik goes out on loan to gain playing time.
All these if Coquelin signs. If he doesn’t, we just sign one in the summer.


Let’s all hope there’s no Coq-ups in negotiations…

Finsbury Park Gooner

So does he have a song yet or what?


An ode to Coquelin!

Oh yes, his name was Francis.
And he returned from football’s abyss
Lorient of Ligue One,
Freiburg and Charlton,
Have u ever heard a story like dis?

Feeder Club No More

The thing about top quality DM’s is they will have top shelf price. Upwards of 35 million pounds/euros methinks… I would much rather buy another centre half and sign up Francis C. He is developing nicely and not in a false ray of hope Denilson way…He could easily be our new Gilberto Silva…. I just hope we pay him what he deserves now with room for pay rises because our Coq will get called up to the French national team sooner than later if he continues to grow in stature with The Arsenal!


Yeah I hope Coquelin stays and becomes our permanent DM.
Always rated him and the past couple of weeks he’s looked bold.
I wouldn’t fuck with him anyway..


I love his lack of fear and aggressive attitude.
Wenger has a hard Coq.


Way to go, Coq. Welcome back to the mighty Arsenal. That Manciteh game was class, more please….