Arsenal's Coquelin flattered by Lille interest
Arsenal midfielder Francis Coquelin says he is flattered by reported interest from Lille but insists he has no immediate plans to return to his homeland with the reigning Ligue 1 champions.
Coquelin, 20, has started six games for the Gunners this season and when team-mate Jack Wilshere was ruled out with a long-term injury, the young Frenchman was tipped to play a greater role.
However, Coquelin has not featured as much as he'd hoped and publicly stated his frustration at his lack of game time last month.
"It is often said that when you are young you have time but I played a whole season at Lorient and now I'm virtually not playing at all," Coquelin said. "It's annoying. Given my playing time for sure the idea of a departure this winter is in my head."
Coquelin has been given more first-team opportunities recently, playing in three of Arsenal's past four games, but has nonetheless welcomed suggestions that Lille are considering making a January swoop.
The France Under-21 international played on loan at Lorient last season and admits that the prospect of regular football again in Ligue 1 is appealing - though he stressed his focus remains on life at Emirates Stadium at the moment.
"I have not had direct contact with them, but it's flattering. LOSC is a very big club," he told L'Equipe. "For now, the transfer window is not open and I am focused on Arsenal, but when there really is interest, we'll see what happens.
"In my heart, I know I can do something in this Arsenal team. But to be the best, I need regular matches."