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Coquelin: I didn’t realise how bad my injury was


Coquelin-P.-63-29-12-2015++FRANCIS Coquelin has admitted to being taken aback by the serious knee injury that has ruled him out since late November.

The 24-year-old, who had established himself as one of Arsenal’s most important first team players during 2015, was injured during a defeat to West Bromwich Albion with knee ligament damage that Arsene Wenger confirmed would rule him out for around three months.

With Mikel Arteta also on the sidelines Mathieu Flamini has found himself indispensable as the midfield anchor, with Calum Chambers also being drafted back into the role in first team training.

Coquelin is desperate to get back into the side soon but he has been surprised by the severity of his injury.

“This is obviously the biggest injury I have had,” he told the club website. “I’ve had a few injuries before, but this one is quite major. At first it was OK, but I didn’t really realise how bad it was.

“Now it’s been a month and it starts to feel a bit long, but when I look around and see different injuries, I realise it could have been worse. Also when I see what’s been happening in the world in recent months, I’m trying to be positive.

“That puts it into perspective. It’s a shame I got injured but I will come back stronger.”
Every injured Arsenal player

So severe has the Frenchman’s injury been that he was unable to attend any of Arsenal’s games until they hosted Manchester City last week, and he found watching from the sidelines to be far less enjoyable than being on the pitch.

He said: “It’s a totally different feeling – I don’t recommend it to anyone!

“I got really stressed. I was really happy when we scored, and then to make it 2-0, but then when I saw all our chances I really wanted the third one to go in. The last 10 minutes was really stressful.

“It’s more nervous watching than playing, it’s better to be active. In the end it was a great feeling though.”

Arsenal have looked to bring in cover for Coquelin in January, with the club opening talks over Mohamed Elneny with Swiss side Basel.

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