By 90Min
November 29, 2017

Was it really his age that force him to retire from international football? Or was it the burdening workload that he constantly endures at Arsenal?

In October, Koscielny came out explaining that he will retire from international duty after World Cup 2018, telling L'Equipe: "There is an end to everything. After the World Cup, I would be almost 33-years-old, it will be time to leave the place" (via Sky Sports).

Wenger’s failure to find a suitable partner for Laurent Koscielny is the gravest sin he could ever commit. The 31-year-old defender is now heading towards the tail end of his career, and one day in the near future it will hit Arsenal fans that that he was grossly misused at Arsenal.

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Koscielny arrived in 2009 at Arsenal for a fee of £8.45m from Lorient. Since his arrival he has slowly moulded himself around the role of Batman, who endeavours desperately to clean up the city of Gotham. It has become a lonesome job, but Koscielny has spent many years cleaning the sullied streets of the Arsenal defence.

Many potential partners have been placed alongside him to serve as his sidekick, yet have all failed, proving more harmful than helpful. For those spent years he valiantly upheld the sanctity of the Arsenal defence, but not without the scars that plague his body.

Per Mertesacker - German international blessed with a World Cup medal - seemed primed for the role. His intelligence and positioning served valuable, yet his lack of speed often left  Koscielny having to constantly atone for the German’s mishaps.

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Shkodran Mustafi arrived from Valencia for an excess of £35m as a solution that would soothe Koscielny's burden. He and Koscielny were supposed to be the perfect tandem that could successfully govern the Arsenal defence. But the German defender would often go rogue, leaving the Frenchmen alone again to put out the fires that his partner instigated.

Towards the tail-end of last season, Wenger chose to play a back-three defence, with two wing-backs offering the attacking nous. It was a tactical shift that was supposed to be the medicine that would remedy Koscielny's lonesome problem.

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We arrive to this present day, assessing whether the tactical shift has served a positive outcome. All those years of constantly putting out fires has been taxing on Koscielny. He’s agility has lost a millisecond of a step, which is significant in the art of defending. His body is beginning to give up on him, as he suffers from recurring injuries.

The Frenchman is still putting out the fires, but not as efficient as before. He continues to be paired with defenders that do no compliment him such as Rob Holding, Francis Coquelin, and sometimes Mohamed Elneny. Likewise, Wenger continues to commit this mortal sin of  mistreating Laurent Koscielny.

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