Thierry Henry: What is required from Arsenal signing and Francis Coquelin this season
The Arsenal legend discusses what he expects from Francis Coquelin and Granit Xhaka in midfield
Thierry Henry believes Arsenal duo Francis Coquelin and Granit Xhaka need to show greater resilience in the remainder of the Premier League season.
The Switzerland international completed a £33m move to Arsenal from Bundesliga side Borussia Monchengladbach in the summer transfer window as Arsene Wenger looked to bolster his midfield options.
Xhaka has struggled to secure a regular starting spot in the Gunners team as he continues to adjust to the Premier League after previously playing the Bundesliga and the Swiss Super League.
However, the 24-year-old has established a fledgling midfield partnership with French star Coquelin in recent weeks as the pair look to shield Wenger’s back four.
Former Arsenal striker Henry, who was part of Wenger’s last title-winning side, believes Coquelin and Xhaka have work to do to cement their encouraging partnership.
Discussing the Gunners’ 2-1 loss to Everton last week ahead of Sunday’s Premier League clash at Manchester City, Henry told Sky Sports:
“Yes it is [a key partnership]. That was a question mark for me at the beginning of the season – I wanted to see what was the best partnership in front of the back four.
“In the second half against Everton when things were difficult and people were in their faces, they didn’t hold the fort. I understand it wasn’t an easy one. But that’s what is going to be required from them for the rest of the season.”
Arsenal finished in second place in the Premier League table last season.