By Amir Mir
Alan Smith has named Laurent Koscielny in the best Arsenal XI since Arsene Wenger took charge.
The Frenchman marked 20 years at the north London club on Thursday, when he was officially unveiled as Bruce Rioch’s successor two decades ago on September 22, 1996.
Sky Sports pundit Smith, who played for the Gunners as a striker between 1987 and 1995 named the 31-year-old defender, alongside Tony Adams in the club’s all time XI since Wenger’s arrival.
“The other centre-half is difficult – Sol Campbell, Martin Keown, Steve Bould, Kolo Toure obviously,” Smith wrote in his Sky Sports column. “But In years to come I think we will look back on Laurent Koscielny as one of the best to have played for Arsenal.
“He is very quick – in the early days he had a rash side to his nature, he might get sent off, or do something silly, but no more. He’s very difficult to beat, and he has even been popping up with a few goals recently as well. I think he is a fine centre-half.”
France international Koscielny has made 253 appearances for the north London club helping them win two consecutive FA Cup trophies in 2014 and 2015, but has failed to lift the Premier League crown.
In contrast to Sol Campbell made 209 appearances for the Gunners winning two Premier League trophies and four FA Cups.
Additionally, the other close contender to Koscielny’s spot is Martin Keown who made 365 appearances for Wenger’s side lifting a mammoth three Premier League trophies and four FA Cups.
In other Arsenal team news, Paul Merson says Chelsea midfielder should be axed for Arsenal clash.