Koscielny

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Koscielny

Post by Vanig Bostanian on Tue Jan 31, 2012 5:46 am

I know Samritpal will like this:
http://footballspeak.com/post/2012/01/30/The-fall-and-rise-of-Laurent-Koscielny.aspx
A statistical look at the improvement of Arsenal centre back Laurent Koscielny.

On Sunday the 27th of February 2011, Laurent Koscielny's Arsenal career hit rock bottom. On the day that it was seen as a near formality by most that Arsenal would overpower Birmingham and win some long overdue silverwear, a comical mix-up with Szczesny squandered the tie and butchered Koscielny's reputation in the process.

The Carling cup final, along with continued calls for the signing of a new, top class centre back in the summer, meant that Koscielny's days as Arsenal's first choice centre back looked numbered.

However, this has proved not to be the case, with Koscielny looking a completely different animal this season. While he sporadically delivered good performances, predominantly in the Champions league (and in particular in the first leg of the Barcelona tie), he looked very shaky at times as was forced to acclimatize to the fast, physical and relentless British game.

However, this season he has added a steely element to his game which has taken him to the next level. Much was said of Arsenal's aerial fragility in the summer but Koscielny has really stepped up to the plate to provide an internal solution.

His improvement is evident from a statistical viewpoint, winning 14% more of his aerial duels. This rate eclipses that of any other Arsenal centre back, even falling just 2% short of 6 ft 4 inch tall mammoth Christopher Samba, reported summer target.

Although he is now solid enough in the air, his real strength is his superb reading of the game. Nicknamed "Bosscielny" by the Arsenal faithful because of the fact nothing seems to get past him, he impressively averages the joint most interceptions per game in the league (2.7) alongside Vermaelen as they counteract attempted through balls past Arsenal's high defensive line.

Koscielny also looks a lot more aggressive in the tackle, which has payed off dividends. His imposing style means he is no longer bullied out of games, and more often than not finds himself victorious in his duels with centre forwards, averaging an impressive 2.8 tackles per game, also more than any other centre back in the division.

To put those numbers into context, I have compiled a table comparing Koscielny to some of Europe's finest centre backs. While stats are only stats and , at the end of the day, nothing beats the naked eye when judging a player, it more than shows the rapid improvement Koscielny has made.

These tackles are also very clean and successful. In an article composed on premier league centre backs by WhoScored.com on the 18th of January, Laurent Koscielny (93%) was found to have the the highest tackle success rate of any player in the league.

Possibly one of the most exciting things about Koscielny is that he is yet to play alongside Vermaelen for a consistent this season. With the full back crisis forcing Vermaelen into the left back slot and Koscielny into right back, Arsenal fans have been denied the sight of watching what could possibly be the best centre back partnership at the club since the days of the invincibles and the Campbell/Toure partnership. The statistics behind the partnership only help to water mouths. They have played only six competitive games together in the heart of defense, conceding just two goals at a rate of 233 minutes per conceded goal whilst collecting four clean sheets. While it would be foolish to expect this high standard continuing throughout a whole campaign, the future looks bright in the heart of the defense.

Koscielny has been one of the few bright sparks in an overall disappointing season for Arsenal. Although some opposition fans still remain skeptical of him, the vast improvement of Koscielny has meant he has become firm fans favorite with the Arsenal faithful. If he continues in this manner, there is no reason to believe why not "Bosscielny" can not earn the respect and admiration of the Premier league as a whole.

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Adam Sisson on Tue Jan 31, 2012 5:56 am

He is probably the form CB in the league right now.

His improvement over last year is remarkable, and a testament to the whole give-him-a-season-to-adjust-to-the-league theory.

He has pace, intelligence, is good on the ball and has developed a much better understanding/reading of the game. The only thing he really lacks is vocal leadership/organzation. I'd also like to say that he has become much more aggressive in challenging for aerial balls. It says something when he is winning more headers than the BFG and TV.

Sort of reminds me of Kolo Toure - never quite the leader, but solid all around and plays very well when matched up with an organizer/leader at the back (Sol/Gallas)
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Re: Koscielny

Post by ralph avedikian on Tue Jan 31, 2012 6:50 am

He is a right footed Vermaelen for me except the leadership qualities.. which means our best CB partnership is Per/TV sadly..

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Re: Koscielny

Post by janelle.noel on Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:07 am

ralph avedikian wrote:He is a right footed Vermaelen for me except the leadership qualities.. which means our best CB partnership is Per/TV sadly..

I dont understand your logic in arriving at that...???

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Re: Koscielny

Post by ralph avedikian on Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:25 am

I mean that a Kos/TV partnership is way too similar, and lacks height.. It has to be Per playing ( organizing skills, height, experience) plus one of Kos/TV ( because they have the same style) .. therefore it is per/tv for me.

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Zaid Derweesh on Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:31 am

What does height matter if he's winning the same amount of aerial duels than Samba? You're not reading closely enough. Another article I saw recently said that TV has pretty low aerial duel success rates this season compared to other top teams. Kos, on the other hand, was one of the highest. Yes, they have similar styles, but if Kos can be Boss in the air, then it doesn't really matter.

I'm really excited to see a back four of Sagna - Kos - Verm - Santos.

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Jenks1981 on Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:26 am

Zaid Derweesh wrote:What does height matter if he's winning the same amount of aerial duels than Samba? You're not reading closely enough. Another article I saw recently said that TV has pretty low aerial duel success rates this season compared to other top teams. Kos, on the other hand, was one of the highest. Yes, they have similar styles, but if Kos can be Boss in the air, then it doesn't really matter.

I'm really excited to see a back four of Sagna - Kos - Verm - Santos.

That is an interesting looking defence Zaid.

The thing is, I think if you asked 10 different fans who our best back four would be, you'd get several different answers, have we seen that defence this season? Will we see that defence this season? Is Mertesacker going to sit on our bench? Hmmmm

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Samritpal Singh on Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:38 am

I've been saying all season long. Top 7 best defenders in Europe. He is so good, my next shirt is with his name at the back.

The guy is a monster. Last season yes he had his fair share of mistakes. this season he has been top class. What performance? Barca last year, Dortmund away and a few others. Him and Vermaelen in the middle would be a very tight defence. He has been stronger, his aerial strength has improved, tackles has been hard. The best thing about him is not all that, it is his anticipation of the game. He knows who's going to run behind him, and he knows where is the ball going to. Dortmund tried to play their game against us, and Koscielny was so good they had no options anymore.

Absolutely love him.
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Re: Koscielny

Post by Jenks1981 on Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:39 am

Semi

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Samritpal Singh on Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:46 am

Jenks1981 wrote:Semi

eh?
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Re: Koscielny

Post by John Foxall on Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:56 am

Van Roy Bostanian wrote:The Carling cup final, along with continued calls for the signing of a new, top class centre back in the summer, meant that Koscielny's days as Arsenal's first choice centre back looked numbered.

In fairness there is a lot of crap in this article, bar the stats that aren't up for debate.

I think it was already clear by the Carling Cup final that he had settled in well. I still thought he had a mistake in him, but that's not the same thing as all this "days numbered bollocks".

Given Djourou's awful end of season form, he was the CB looking most likely to play a key role in the 11/12 season.

He's been excellent anyway. The idea that he could be 3rd choice centre-half is a joke. You'd have to ignore a lot of significant criteria to pick him after both Per and Vermaelen, both of whom are very good but not infallible defenders too.

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Christopher Flanagan on Tue Jan 31, 2012 10:57 am

"I've been saying all season long. Top 7 best defenders in Europe. He is so good, my next shirt is with his name at the back. "

No, you started saying top 6. And it was as stupid and meaningless then as now.

Form wise, you can't drop Kos. That said, I think Per needs to be in the starting four for his organisation and the balance he offers. Genuinely not sure what our best defence is.
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Re: Koscielny

Post by Wesley Wang on Tue Jan 31, 2012 4:27 pm

I'd rather keep Kos in the middle and have Verm play LB. As Flanagan said, Kos is undroppable on current form, and Vermaelen is better at going forward than Koscielny.

We need to keep Per at CB. He'll come good.
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Re: Koscielny

Post by Samritpal Singh on Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:22 pm

Christopher Flanagan wrote:

No, you started saying top 6. And it was as stupid and meaningless then as now.


No I did not. I said top 7 all the way. And it wasn't stupid and certainly isn't stupid now. In current times, he is one of the best defender.
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Re: Koscielny

Post by nick koupparis on Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:09 pm

Koscielny great watching him making the shirt his own. afro
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Re: Koscielny

Post by Mike York on Tue Jan 31, 2012 11:13 pm

I liked him ever since I saw him keep up pace with Torres in the first game he played (he got a red card in the same game but meh). He made some mistakes in his first year but he was thrown straight in at the deep end so considering that he played well.

This year he has come on leaps and bounds and looks to be one of the most reliable defenders in the league, without him we'd have been buggered. He is rapid, likes to go forward, can defend in the air and on the ground... seems to have it all bar, like has been said, leadership qualities. But when he makes runs like he did against Villa to earn that penalty he doesn't need leadership qualities, he can inspire players with his play. He also looks like the T-1000 from Terminator 2.
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Re: Koscielny

Post by Michael Schatzky on Wed Feb 01, 2012 12:07 am

Mike York wrote:I liked him ever since I saw him keep up pace with Torres in the first game he played (he got a red card in the same game but meh). He made some mistakes in his first year but he was thrown straight in at the deep end so considering that he played well.

This year he has come on leaps and bounds and looks to be one of the most reliable defenders in the league, without him we'd have been buggered. He is rapid, likes to go forward, can defend in the air and on the ground... seems to have it all bar, like has been said, leadership qualities. But when he makes runs like he did against Villa to earn that penalty he doesn't need leadership qualities, he can inspire players with his play. He also looks like the T-1000 from Terminator 2.

Agreed.
Suck it ,Natasha Brown.

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Mike York on Wed Feb 01, 2012 12:12 am

If she had her way we'd have got Zat Knight instead.
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Re: Koscielny

Post by Vanig Bostanian on Wed Feb 01, 2012 12:14 am

Last year when he still had a mistake in him, I liked his passing ability and his ability on the ball, he looked so classy for a center back but those are not the most important things for a center back. Now, I like so many things about him like his clean tackles, interceptions, owning tricky forwards, so on and so forth.

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Christopher Flanagan on Wed Feb 01, 2012 3:34 am

Samritpal Singh wrote:
Christopher Flanagan wrote:

No, you started saying top 6. And it was as stupid and meaningless then as now.


No I did not. I said top 7 all the way. And it wasn't stupid and certainly isn't stupid now. In current times, he is one of the best defender.

I didn't say he hasn't been playing well, I said that it was a banal, unquantifiable and arbitrary thing to say. Besides which, in order to really be considered in the top anything, he'll need to maintain this sort of form for the next 2 or 3 years. Then we'll really be able to tell. I have a feeling he will, but who knows.
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Re: Koscielny

Post by ralph avedikian on Wed Feb 01, 2012 5:42 am

I dont think anyone can call our best CB partnership.. even Wenger.

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Jenks1981 on Wed Feb 01, 2012 5:48 am

ralph avedikian wrote:I dont think anyone can call our best CB partnership.. even Wenger.

I think the sensible answer if we accept all three CBs are of similar ability, they have different qualities so it would depend on the opposition, form and fitness.

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Evan Mullins on Wed Feb 01, 2012 10:29 am

Exactly Mike, I think you have to look at the opposition and match the qualities of our centerbacks to them. If you're playing a European match against a quick Spanish side I think you take Vermaelen and Koscielny every time. When you come up against a Stoke or Bolton side that are going to lump balls over top or play for set pieces, you take Per to clear the balls out.
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Re: Koscielny

Post by Zaid Derweesh on Wed Feb 01, 2012 10:31 am

Except Koscielny has a better aerial challenge success rate than Per. So you'd drop Vermaelen, yes?

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Re: Koscielny

Post by Mike York on Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:45 pm

Laurent Koscielny is the EA SPORTS Player of the Month.

Following the most closely-contested poll of the season so far, the Arsenal centre back claimed his first Club award after a superb month for Arsène Wenger's side.

Laurent's January began with his first goal of the season in the 2-1 defeat to Fulham, and he then performed admirably as the Gunners saw off Leeds in the FA Cup third round.

The French defender also starred against Manchester United and Aston Villa, helping to create Robin van Persie's equaliser in the former before winning the decisive penalty in the latter.

Laurent received 31.4 per cent of the votes in January, just edging Van Persie into the runners-up spot. The captain picked up 27.8 per cent of the votes.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain finished third, just 0.3 per cent behind Van Persie.

http://www.arsenal.com/news/news-archive/koscielny-is-ea-sports-player-of-the-month?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+arsenal-news+%28News+Feed%29
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Re: Koscielny

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