Laurent Koscielny has revealed he tried to get Olivier Giroud to join Bordeaux in January while lifting the lid on the humiliating loss he suffered with Arsenal at the hands of Manchester United seven years ago.
Koscielny's nine-year stay at Emirates Stadium came to an end when he completed a €5 million move to Bordeaux in August 2019.
The France international appeared in over 350 games for Arsenal in all competitions, helping the club win five trophies along the way, but he left north London in acrimonious circumstances after refusing to report for a pre-season tour of the United States.
Koscielny says his decision to return to his homeland was motivated by a desire to move out of the spotlight, having been a key figure for the Gunners under both Arsene Wenger and Unai Emery.
"I could have stayed at Arsenal, remain the captain of the team, play a leading role in the Premier League, but I've come to an age where I need to enjoy life," the 35-year-old told France Football .
"I didn't want to play for another club in England, it was impossible. I had known too much with Arsenal."
Bordeaux comfortably avoided relegation in Koscielny's first season at Matmut Atlantique, with their 12th-place finish in the final standings confirmed when the 2019-20 campaign was called off in April.
However, the defender sought to increase the club's strength in depth in the last winter transfer window by reaching out to his ex-Arsenal team-mate Giroud, who currently plies his trade at Chelsea.
The 34-year-old had slipped out of favour under Frank Lampard in the first half of the season, and was being tipped to secure a transfer away from Stamford Bridge amid reported interest from Inter and Lazio.
Koscielny offered Giroud another route out of Chelsea, but he ultimately ended up staying put, and went on to earn a one-year contract extension in May.
Quizzed on his failed attempt to lure the striker to Bordeaux, the former Gunners captain responded: "Yeah, that's right. I tried. Oli didn't come and I totally respect his choice."
Koscielny enjoyed plenty of memorable moments in English football, but he was also part of the Arsenal side that suffered a stunning 8-2 reversal against arch-rivals United back in 2011.
The Bordeaux centre-back concedes that was the lowest point of his career to date, and has put the heavy loss down to the fact several players were on their way out of the Emirates Stadium at the time.
"My worst game? Perhaps it was the 8-2 in Manchester, against United that was two days before the end of the summer transfer window," Koscielny added.
"We were playing with players who were in the process of leaving and United had 100 per cent success with every strike [at goal]. We all had a bad game."