Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger believes that the form shown by Francis Coquelin has saved the club £40 million, reports the Daily Express.
The Frenchman was out on loan at Championship side Charlton Athletic as recently as December, but has since gone on to become an important part of the starting XI at the Emirates. He has now made 21 appearances in the Premier League, and has been one of the most important players in the Gunners’ renaissance in the second half of the season.
As a result Wenger may not need to invest so much in central midfield this summer. This could leave more funds for other signings in the transfer window, as the North London club look to strengthen for a title challenge next time round. Having spent big on Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez in recent years they could match that again.
Their boss will certainly have more money because of the form of Coquelin. The 65-year-old said: “The appreciation today of the quality of a player is just down to the money spent. If we had bought Coquelin at Christmas for £40m, everyone would be saying, ‘what a signing’. He didn’t cost any money, but he is still a good player.
“His emergence has not changed our thinking a lot but what is for sure he has shown he has the capacity to play a big part in the success of the team. Nobody would dispute that his performances have been convincing and that he is ready for a fight even if somebody comes in. And even if somebody comes in, he will stay. I extended his contract so that means I believe in him.”