Arsenal legend Laurent Koscielny announces retirement amid racism controversy

Arsenal great Laurent Koscielny has announced his retirement from professional football amid racism allegations.

Since leaving The Emirates, the French international struggled to adapt to Ligue 1. After producing several poor performances, the club removed him from their playing squad. ‘Les Girondins’ currently sit bottom of the table. And with just one win in their last eight games, an escape from relegation looks unlikely.

In 2018, Koscielny missed out on a World Cup win due to an achilles problem. However, However, he’d have liked a positive end to his playing career. But unfortunately for the 36-year-old, he hasn’t got it, and to make matters worse, he’s retired amid some serious accusations.

Laurent Koscielny accused of racism

The Bordeaux ultras group – UB87, have claimed that the Frenchman and goalkeeper Benoit Costil were “sometimes racist.”

Koscielny adamantly denied the allegations via a statement in the Sun Quest newspaper.

It read: “Following the article published in the Sud Ouest newspaper on March 22, 2022, Laurent Koscielny was surprised and shocked. But also saddened by the remarks made by one of the representatives of the Ultramarines 87 Group against him, which the press is now echoing. 

“Without there being any ambiguity, he strongly disputes these accusations which have seriously injured him and which necessarily have repercussions on his family and those around him.

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It continued: “As a reminder, Laurent Koscielny has not been part of the professional staff of the club since the end of January 2022. He recalls that he is still an employee of the Girondins de Bordeaux.

“Aware that the club was in difficulty, he accepted the proposal made to occupy a new function and to release his salary as proof of the concern he has for the best interests of the club. As such, he would like to thank the club for the mark of confidence shown in him by entrusting him with this position.”

Why did Laurent Koscielny leave Arsenal?

During his nine-year spell with ‘The Gunners’, the defender became a much-loved player. Making over 255 appearances, he was a vital part of the defence, which helped the club capture three FA Cups and two Community Shields. But despite his success, the former captain left North London on a sour note.

With a year left on his contract, he decided he wanted to move to Bordeaux and went to extreme measures to secure the transfer. He outright refused to participate in the English side’s pre-season tour of the USA and decided to remain in England to force a move to the Matmut Atlantique. Within a month, he signed for the club for £4,600,000. But evidently, his belief that the grass was greener on the other side came crashing down around him.

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