Arsene Wenger says he’s been left “very surprised” by Laurent Koscielny’s sudden standoff with Arsenal .
Club captain Koscielny has refused to go on the Gunners’ pre-season tour of the US, opting inside to stay at home at he tries to engineer a move back to his native France.
Both Bordeaux and Rennes have been linked with a move for the 33-year-old, who is hoping to be released from his contract despite it still having a year to run.
Arsenal – who beat Bayern Munich 2-1 in a friendly in Los Angeles on Wednesday evening – are now said to be considering fining the defender , who will also be stripped of the club captaincy if he ends up staying in north London.
Koscielny’s actions have soured his relationship with the Gunners, for whom he has played for nine years ever since Wenger signed him from Lorient for £10million in the summer of 2010.
And the former Gunners boss insists that Koscielny’s behaviour under him was always exemplary.
“I am very surprised by the current situation,” Wenger told L’Equipe, via the Metro .
“I do not know the whole story, but Laurent’s behaviour with me has always been beyond reproach.
“I think highly of Laurent as a man.”
Koscielny’s friend and former Arsenal teammate Olivier Giroud – another one of Wenger’s former charges – says that the truth will come out over the centre-back’s situation sooner or later.
“You cannot make a judgement when you don’t have all the clues,” he told BBC Sport .
“I’m pretty sure we don’t know everything in this situation.
“I hope both sides will find the best agreement.”