Former Arsenal captain, Laurent Koscielny has officially announced his retirement from football following his acrimonious departure from Bordeaux in January.
Koscielny made over 350 appearances for the Gunners and was the cornerstone of the club’s defense for almost a decade, playing a pivotal role in two consecutive FA Cup triumphs.
The 36-year-old decided to call time on his career having spent the last two months as a free agent, but his spell with the Ligue 1 club ended on a sour note after he was frozen out of the team before being faced with the demands from fans.
Bordeaux ultras group UB87 have accused Koscielny and team-mate Benoit Costil of a lack of leadership, and of ‘scandalous, sometimes racist’ behavior.
However, Koscielny says he is ‘surprised, shocked and saddened’ by the claims.
A statement read: ‘Following the article published in the Sud Ouest newspaper on March 22, 2022 entitled “Girondins de Bordeaux. Costil and Koscielny, accusations of racism that shake”,
Laurent Koscielny was surprised, 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 repercussions on his family and those around him.
Regarding this, Laurent Koscielny underlines the investigative work of the Sud Ouest newspaper which solicited more than thirty people (according to the journalist’s statements) who formally denied the alleged racist behavior of Laurent Koscielny.
‘As a reminder, if Laurent 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.
‘As such, he would like to thank the club for the mark of confidence shown in him by entrusting him with this position.
‘Laurent also shares the club’s position, which recalled in its press release that “no document aimed at supporting these allegations has been brought to the attention of the Club, which in principle intends to exercise the greatest caution”.’
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