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Arsenal captain refuses to travel with squad for pre-season tour

Arsenal captain Laurent Koscielny has refused to travel with the rest of the squad for their pre-season tour of the USA.

Koscielny is believed to be looking for a move away from Arsenal this summer. According to reports, the defender wants to return to France and wind down his playing career.

Laurent Koscielny unhappy at Arsenal; seeking exit

The Frenchman is also reportedly unhappy that the Gunners triggered the one-year extension in his contract as he is keen on an exit.

This is a rather surprising development considering Koscielny has always been a consummate professional. How his actions affect the rest of the team remains to be seen.

Arsenal released a statement earlier today confirming that Koscielny refused to travel with the rest of the side. They also added that they are very disappointed with his actions and that there will be consequences to pay.

“Laurent Koscielny has refused to travel to the US for our pre-season tour. We are very disappointed by Laurent’s actions, which are against our clear instructions.

“We hope to resolve this matter and will not be providing any further comment at this time.”

What’s next for Koscielny and Arsenal?

Koscielny has been plagued by injuries the last few seasons. However, he remains an integral part of the side that lacks leadership in his absence.

The 33-year-old made just 17 Premier League appearances last season and his absence was a key reason for Arsenal’s fifth-place finish.

It remains to be seen whether the Gunners axe him from the squad or whether he changes his mind regarding his future.

Unai Emery, meanwhile, is keen on adding reinforcements to the side. Arsenal are reportedly close to completing a move for centre-back William Saliba, while the likes of Wilfried Zaha and Malcom continue to be linked with the Gunners.

Arsenal will face Bayern Munich, Fiorentina and Real Madrid during their pre-season tour of the USA.