Valencia agree £12m Francis Coquelin fee with Arsenal

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 28: of Arsenal during the Premier League match between Cryst
Image: Francis Coquelin has been at Arsenal for almost a decade after signing in July 2008

Valencia have agreed a £12m fee with Arsenal for the transfer of midfielder Francis Coquelin, Sky Sports News understands.

The 26-year-old prepares to move to Spain after rejecting interest from Premier League clubs West Ham United and Crystal Palace.

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The French midfielder has been at Arsenal for almost a decade but appearances in the first team this season have been limited with just seven starts in all competitions.

When quizzed about Coquelin's future on Tuesday, manager Arsene Wenger said: "It's a possibility [Coquelin's departure] but nothing is decided."

The midfielder made his debut for Arsenal in 2008 having signed from French club Stade Lavallois that summer.

Loan spells at Lorient, Freiburg and Charlton followed before Coquelin broke into the Arsenal first team on a regular basis in the 2014/15 season.

Jack Wilshere celebrates after opening the scoring for Arsenal
Image: Jack Wilshere has re-emerged as Arsenal's first choice central midfielder alongside Granit Xhaka

Coquelin won two FA Cups with the club appearing in the 2015 and 2017 finals but the re-emergence of Jack Wilshere as well as competition from Aaron Ramsey, Granit Xhaka and Mohamed Elneny has forced Coquelin to seek a move abroad.

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Arsenal are expected to open contract discussions with Wilshere in the next week with the England midfielder's deal coming to an end in June.

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