Francis Coquelin arrived at Arsenal in 2008, at the age of 17.
The defensive midfielder made a few appearances in the next few years, playing 22 games in 2012/13, but found himself sent out on loan spells with Lorient and SC Freiburg for more playing time.
Neither loan was particularly successful and, with one year left on his contract, Coquelin found himself at Charlton Athletic until 10 months ago.
With just six months to go on his Arsenal contract he broke into the team, and has stayed there ever since.
“Francis has always been an amazing player,” Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain told the media in Monday’s press conference. “When you’re at a club like Arsenal, sometimes it can be hard to find opportunities but he’s someone who has a great attitude.”
“Sometimes going out on loan can be hard for players to do but he’s gone out on loan, proved himself by playing well then came back and took his opportunity. He’s someone that I love having in the team.”
The never-say-die attitude is what has kept Coquelin in the side, with his eye-catching defensive style in midfield.
The Frenchman is now a regular in the side, doing the dirty work at the base of the midfield while more gifted players do work ahead of him on the ball.
“When I think about Arsenal I think he’s a massive vocal part of our team, and he proves that week after week and in training as well,” said Oxlade-Chamberlain. “Everything that he does is different to what a lot of the other boys in our team can do.
“I think that’s crucial to the team because he brings something different. As long as he keeps doing that I’m sure he’s going to keep progressing as a player and helping this team.”
Coquelin may be available for selection in midweek, with Arsenal facing Olympiacos in the Champions League.
With Arsenal already without Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini, the manager may be tempted to put Coquelin straight in the side following a knee issue.