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'I Wanted Them To Lose' - World Cup Win Hit Laurent Koscielny Hard

'I Wanted Them To Lose' - World Cup Win Hit Laurent Koscielny Hard
Arthur James O'Dea
By Arthur James O'Dea
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Picking up an injury during Arsenal's Europa League semi-final clash with Atletico Madrid last season, what appeared an innocuous enough incident resulted in Laurent Koscielny missing out on France's World Cup success in Russia.

With 51-caps to his name, the central-defender Arsenal signed from Lorient in 2010 would almost certainly have been in the 23-man squad that traveled to the tournament.

At 33-years-old, Koscielny's decision to announce his international retirement coincided with revelations regarding the extent to which he felt mistreated by the French manager, Didier Deschamps.

"It feels like a hit on the back of the head. When you are in good form, you have lots of friends [but] when you are injured... after a certain period of time, you are forgotten about.


"He [Deschamps] called me once for my birthday in September. Otherwise, no. Lots of people disappointed me. Not only the coach."

Speaking to the French television channel Canal+, Koscielny admits that the manner in which he felt overlooked and forgotten resulted in some mixed thoughts regarding his hopes for the ultimately victorious French side.

"I wanted them to qualify, and at the same time I wanted them to lose.


"Some people will say; 'What do you mean, he wanted the French team to lost?' But that was my feeling at that moment."

Revealing that he has since developed a more rounded outlook and wishes the French team well, it is nevertheless remarkable that a player who started in France's European Championships final defeat to Portugal in 2016 could be reduced to such a conflicting state of mind.

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