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Laurent Koscielny tempted to leave Arsenal this summer amid interest in Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti

Laurent Koscielny

Bengaluru, May 26: Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny is considering leaving the North London giants this summer as the Gunners continue to stall on handing him a contract renewal.

The 33-year-old is expected to lead the North London side out in Baku, hoping to lead the club to its first European trophy in 25 years. However, that game could be his last in Gunners colours.

The Frenchman has 12 months to run on his current deal at the Emirates. Although, there have been talks at the Emirates Stadium side over a new deal, but there has been no movement forward and reportedly the veteran is seemingly pondering a fresh challenge now.

The Frenchman’s agent admitted that he was considering his future last year when it was announced that Arsene Wenger would be leaving the club, counting his own release as a timely style to move along with the man who brought him to North London.

However, then injury struck in the Europa League semi-final against Atletico Madrid and made him sit outside of football for the whole transfer season before he made a comeback in the mid-half of the ongoing season.

The French international has been a regular since his return and arguably has been one of Arsenal's best defenders this season. But reportedly the player is not willing to stick around further in England and is becoming more and more tempted by the idea of trying something new.

There are a number of teams keen on snapping up the French defender, with Rennes and AC Milan both showing interests. However, Bundesliga side Bayer Leverkusen reportedly appear to be leading the race currently as they want the experience of the veteran for next season’s Champions’ League.

However, right now the whole situation is depending upon the Gunners signing an able replacement of him first. The North London side are currently heavily linked with Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti. They apparently want to break their bank to land the 25-year-old making him their main man in the backline.

Barcelona are ready to cash in on Umtiti for £53million after he lost his starting berth and with a move for Ajax’s Matthijs de Ligt on the cards. But the World Cup winner will most likely be open to join a club playing in the Champions League next season and it now only hinges on their outcome against their rivals Chelsea in the Europa League final.

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Story first published: Sunday, May 26, 2019, 14:28 [IST]
Other articles published on May 26, 2019
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