Arsenal to Treat Abou Diaby With Absolute Class


It is very easy, especially in this modern age of football, to distance yourself emotionally from the players out on the pitch.  Too often are we quick to criticize and jeer the players from behind our blue screens of anonymity.  A story that has come out recently though might do something to restore my collective faith in the humanity of football.

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The Daily Mail reports that regardless of whether Arsenal offer glass man midfielder Abou Diaby a new contract this summer, the club will allow him to use our London Colney training facilities to continue to rehab and stay healthy so as to find a new club.

Diaby arrived in North London from French outfit Auxerre in 2006 for a fee of around 2 million pounds.  Since then though the Frenchman has had an absolute nightmare of a time trying to cement a position in the first team as he battles a ridiculous number of injuries.

It is easy to understand the fans frustration and often ironic cheers when he is to return “like a new signing” when you quantify how long Diaby has actually been out injured. In the past 5 seasons he has only made 32 senior appearances for the club in total. During his time with Arsenal he has accumulated a staggering 42+ injuries and has spent 555 days on the physio’s table in the past 2 years alone.

Setting aside the humane aspect of Diaby’s career for a second this is also a blow on a purely sporting aspect.  When Abou Diaby arrived at the Emirates he was supposed to be the next Patrick Vierra.  Lofty boots to fill obviously but he had all the physical attributes and the style to be our next box-to-box midfielder.

On the odd occasion that he has managed to string together multiple matches before being injured he has indeed looked promising.  I don’t think anyone will soon forget how well he bossed the midfield away at Anfield in the beginning of the 2012-2013 season.  It really made you wonder what could have been, had his luck been a little different.

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Now, though, the sun seems to be setting on the career of Abou Diaby at Arsenal.  The Mail also report that there is a possibility of Arsenal offering a short term “pay-as you-play” contract to Arsenal, but even that seems doubtful to me.  The boss has historically shown a great amount of faith in Abou Diaby, but at some point you have to do what is best for the club.

“He (Diaby) knows me must make a decision. Of course he understands completely that he has to perform and be present on a consistent way, an I will se where we go from there”-Arsene Wenger

Regardless of what happens with Diaby at Arsenal he has apparently been told that the doors at London Colney will be open to him during his search for a new club should that be the conclusion of his career at Arsenal.  This act of good will on Arsenal is a reminder of what Arsenal mean as a club.  Arsenal are a club that foster a family atmosphere and genuinely want the best for their players.  Wenger has always said he wants his players, and the younger ones in particular, to succeed off the field as well on it and this is a real life example of that sentiment.

I honestly have a hard time seeing clubs like Chelsea or Manchester City doing something like this and we can all be proud to support Arsenal because of stories such as this.  I personally wish nothing but the best for Abou Diaby as well and hope he can find success somewhere, at Arsenal or elsewhere.  Best of luck Abou Diaby and #COYG.

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