Laurent Koscielny has returned to full training ahead of a first-team return next month.

Koscielny was ‘heavily involved’ in first-team training last week, as he steps up his recovery ahead of schedule.

Charles Watts, the Arsenal correspondent at Football.London, wrote that Koscielny’s recovery “is certainly ahead of schedule” after the defender took part in a session with the squad. He added that Arsenal are remaining cautious with him though, understandably so.

If Arsenal play this one right, they could have Koscielny back at full fitness for a couple of years. Arsene Wenger stated in May that the advantage of the defender’s recent surgery is that it also heals the Achilles inflammation, something the French international had been struggling with on an almost constant basis.

As a result, as long as Arsenal bring Koscielny back in good time, he could return in a better state than before the rupture.

That would be great news, because many Arsenal fans seem to be under the impression that even when he returned, Koscielny would be a ticking time-bomb with injuries. Having the captain back will be great, but if he’s going to spend the season in and out of the team with niggling Achilles inflammation issues, the Gunners can’t rely on him.

Having said all that about easing him back, I still can’t wait to see Koscielny back out there as soon as possible. We’ve missed him.