Arsenal have officially confirmed the departure of injury-prone midfielder Abou Diaby, whose contract has expired at the Emirates Stadium.
The Gunners’ official website paid tribute to “a hugely talented midfielder” who spent 10 years at the club. Alongside him, youth players Jack Jebb, Austin Lipman, Brandon Ormonde-Ottewill and Josh Vickers have also departed after Arsenal decided against offering them new deals.
Diaby made 180 senior appearances for the north London side, scoring 19 goals, per Arsenal.com. At his best, the Frenchman is a powerhouse midfielder whose long strides see him shield the back line and provide offensive support.
However, he hasn’t made more than 10 Premier League starts in a single season since the 2010-11 campaign, per WhoScored.com. B/R UK detailed his consistent injury struggles:
— Bleacher Report UK (@br_uk) June 10, 2015
At 29 years old, Diaby should now look to prove his fitness and land a contract elsewhere. He is well-equipped to be a quality performer in the Premier League, but unfortunately, question marks will always remain over his long-term suitability.
Diaby’s departure increases the need for Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger to land an alternative defensive midfielder to Francis Coquelin for the 2014-15 campaign.