By Joe Brewin
Laurent Koscielny admits he has never felt as good on the football pitch as he does now.
The defender has impressed both manager and fans alike in recent months after a brilliant start to the campaign, underlining his credentials with a fine showing at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
Koscielny has grown in stature since his move from Ligue 1 outfit Lorient in the summer of 2010. His rise through French football was rapid, working his way up from the third-tier with Guingamp in 2004 before eventually sealing a move to Emirates Stadium last year.
The 26-year-old has won praise from Arsène Wenger in recent weeks and he believes he is playing like never before.
“I feel I'm in the best form of my life,” said Koscielny. “I've improved a lot. I keep working on the basics, my controls and my passes.
“I'm also more rigorous. I make less fouls and get less booked as I needed time to adapt to England. I also cope better with the pressure of playing in a very big club. And I know I can improve even more.
“Chelsea was one of the best performances of my career, along with the win against Barcelona at home last season,” he added. “Most importantly it's a win that will bring the team together even more and will bring great confidence.”
Arsenal have now picked up eight wins in their last nine matches in all competitions and sit just three points off fourth place in the Premier League. Results and performances have picked up of late and Koscielny says the feeling around the camp has never been better.
“There is a new team spirit at the Club,” he said. “We are all fighting for each other, we are all united.
“Everybody defends. If you just defend with the four defenders, it's difficult. But now we are a real unit and it's easier. The new players have now adapted well to the team and to the football we play.
“We have gained more serenity too. At Chelsea, even when we were a goal behind, I knew we would win. We have improved so much in the last month and we have players in great form like Robin.
“We all became aware that we could achieve something great this season. This team is growing and so am I."
* With thanks to Julien Laurens of Le ParisienCopyright 2017 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source