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Laurent Koscielny looks likely to start on the bench for France

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France manager Laurent Blanc has hinted that Arsenal star Laurent Koscielny is set to miss out on a spot in his starting XI for Les Bleus’ Euro 2012 opener against England.

The Gunners defender is likely to take his place on the bench with Philippe Mexes and Adil Rami, who were both criticised by Blanc recently, starting.

“We’ve got two big players in central defence and I hope they play very well tomorrow,” the France manager said.

“Koscielny has had a very good season with Arsenal but, as you know, you need experience at centre-back and players that work together in terms of instinct.”

However, Blanc gave Koscielny hope by telling him to keep pushing and he could force his way into the side.

“I think we did very well during the qualifying campaign, with no regrets, and luckily we have two players in good form,” Blanc added.

“Laurent needs to make sure these two players are worried about their place and kept on their toes.”

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Arsenal

Nickname: The Gunners.

Ground: Emirates Stadium (capacity 60,361).

Founded: 1886.

Honours: First Division (until 1992) and Premier League: 1931, 1933, 1934, 1935, 1938, 1948, 1953, 1971, 1989, 1991, 1998, 2002, 2004.

FA Cup: 1930, 1936, 1950, 1971, 1989, 1991, 1998, 2002, 2003, 2005.

League Cup: 1987, 1993.

Fairs Cup: 1970.

Cup Winners’ Cup: 1994.

Leading goalscorer: Thierry Henry, 228.

Leading appearances: David O’Leary, 722.