Laurent Koscielny has given his backing to Arsene Wenger stating his manager is ‘still the man’ to lead Arsenal.
The French defender, who was signed by Wenger from Lorient in 2010, also spoke optimistically about not giving up on the Premier League title, even though the Gunners sit 11 points behind leaders Leicester with just eight games remaining.
“He has been at the club for a while now, the banners are not something new for him,” Koscielny told press in France ahead of his country’s friendly game with Holland.
“He’s very calm. He knows what he has done for the club and the coach is still the man to help us, maybe with a little luck to win the championship.
“I can understand the frustration of the fans, having not won the championship for a long time. In any case, we try by all means each season to lift the trophy.
“However, everything is not under our control. The club has to deal with injuries, periods of poor form.
“There is a small chance but mathematically it’s still possible. We must win all our matches.”
Koscielny’s support for Wenger comes less than 24 hours since Mesut Ozil took to social media to dismiss spurious rumours that he’d leave Arsenal if the manager remained at the helm next season.
“Have seen the media reports today,” he wrote on Twitter. “Arsène Wenger was a big reason for me joining Arsenal – this hasn’t changed!”
Elsewhere, The Times are ‘exclusively’ claiming that Per Mertesacker will not be handed a new deal before he enters the final twelve months of his current deal.
The German, who joined Arsenal in 2011 from Werder Bremen, is contracted until July 2017 by which time he’ll be nearly 33-years-old. The report also claims that Wenger could hand the captaincy to Petr Cech this summer when Mikel Arteta leaves the club.