Arsenal captain ended a wait of 225 days for a first-team game on Thursday when he led the team out against Qarabag in the Europa League.

It was a highly-charged, emotional moment for Laurent Koscielny, a far cry from the agony of May 3 this year when his season - and World Cup - was ended by a ruptured Achilles.

That date is fixed in Laurent’s mind but now he’s looking forward after completing the long road back to recovery.

“Yes, it was an important day for me,” he told Arsenal.com. “It was the end of my rehab, so I am very happy to play today with my team, for this club, and to enjoy it with them on the pitch.

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“It was very emotional because you remember the first day when I was injured, the 3rd of May, and now we are on the [13th] of December, and you have some flashbacks in your head about different periods you had during your rehab.

“I met a lot of people who helped me a lot, and so I’m very proud to know them now. There were some difficult moments, during this period, but now I think I’m calmer and more focused on what I want, and physically I’m OK.

“I’m proud of myself,” added the captain.

Alexandre Lacazette scored the game's only goal after being set up by Mesut Ozil as Arsenal wrapped of the group stage with a win.

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