Koscielny - The pressure I felt watching cup final

When Laurent Koscielny was sent off in our final Premier League fixture of last season against Everton, it robbed us of arguably our best defender for the Emirates FA Cup final.

For the France international, it was tough to swallow - but not as tough as having to watch the showpiece against Chelsea from the touchline.

“When I don’t play it is, well not 'horrible', but I feel a lot of pressure,” Koscielny told Arsenal Player. “You are in the stands and you just watch the game, you can do nothing. 

“It is different to when you are on the pitch - it’s not something I like and during the 90 minutes I wasn’t very well! 

“But we won so at the end I was very happy for the club, for the team and the fans. When you play the final, you just need to win the game and we did it.

“[Against Everton] our first priority was to qualify for the Champions League and we only had a small chance of [overtaking] Liverpool. With the situation, they went on the counter-attack and I felt I could get the ball but the striker touched the ball and I couldn’t stop. 

“The referee gave a red card and if he thought that was the best solution for this tackle, then I can accept it. It’s the rules, I made a mistake, got a red card and missed the FA Cup final. 

“It was difficult because I wanted to play in the final, but I was happy with Per because he was injured all season, but stayed focused and was always professional with his attitude and he was amazing in that game.”

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