By Walter Broeckx
So Mathieu Debuchy it is who will fill the space left by Bacary Sagna.
Born on 28 July 1985 and will turn 29 this summer.
He was born in Fretin and that is rather nice for me as it gives me the opportunity to tell you a bit about that part of France that has a link with my region Flanders, the northern part of Belgium.
Fretin is a little town that is in the region of France Nord-Pas de Calais. That is the official name. But it was and is also known as the region French Flanders. As it once belonged to Flanders. But wars and such things and kings putting down border stones where they shouldn’t put them drove this part of Flanders to France.
So if history had brought different choices I could have had another compatriot at our club. If the original borders of the county of Flanders had been respected he would have been from Belgium. But history is history and so he is French.
Did you know by the way that most of the cities and villages in the Lille – Calais area also have their original Flemish name? Everyone knows Calais and even we in Flanders use it, but the original name was Kales. The same goes for Dunkirk. A name that brings sad memories about wars. In French it is called Dunkerque but the original name in Flemish was Dunkerke. Coming from the words “dune” and “kerke”. Dune is the same in Dutch as in English and kerke is church. So a church in the Dunes.
Another interesting note is that the important part of his name ‘buch’ as ‘de’ in French is the equivalent of ‘van’ in Dutch means a chopped piece of wood to throw in the fire. And in the local dialect that they speak in Flanders just over the border with French Flanders it is also used as the name of a typical cake that is called a “buche” and that is eaten at Christmas. If you type in “buche de noel” as they also call it like that in French and search for pictures you will see what I mean. And just the thought of it makes me long for Christmas as it really is a nice cake.
I could go on about this but we will now more look at re Debuchy but as he is a real local boy who grew up in the shadow of Lille that in Dutch is called Rijssel and so we still have a bit of a bond through our history that once was the same. And I wanted to mention this. I can imagine some readers will appreciate it.
But enough about this little history and food lesson that you will only be able to read on Untold because, well, we are Untold.
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I think you will be more interested in his football capacities than in the history of his region.
When he was 7 or 8 years old he started playing for the big club in the French Flanders region: Lille OSC. Before that he had played at the local club in Fretin. But he was destined for more and to become their most famous inhabitant.
In his youth he was mostly played as a defensive midfielder. Later converted to the right win and then dropped to the right back position. It was the manager at Lille, Claude Puel, who made him end up at the right back position. But he can do more as he has trained to do more in his earlier days of his career.
He made his début for Lille when he was around 18-19 years old in the season 2003-2004. Gradually he gained his place at the club and he became an ever present apart from when he got injured in his early years. A big injury that kept him out for 6 months was an ankle injury with his ligaments torn.
But after that he was always present at the club. And more importantly he was at Lille when they won the double in 2011. Amazing how many players of that team have played or are still playing in the PL. Apart from himself we had Gervinho of course who has been here and now is having a good time in Italy. There is Eden Hazard at Chelsea, there is Cabaye who has played at Newcastle and now at PSG. So they sure had a good group out there but as usual the big money teams plundered them.
When it comes to comparing him with Sagna it seems that they are not that far apart from each other. Debuchy is a few years younger but not that young. So I think he is a player that Wenger will use for a few years and then I think Wenger will have a new right back ready from within Arsenal. A right back that might ring a bell as I am a big fan and believer in Bellerin.
Debuchy was picked in front of Sagna by the French manager this world cup and well that seems to be a good indication on how they rate him in France. Of course he has played for Newcastle so we know that he is a decent right back. He can defend, he can attack, is strong and a reasonable good header I have been told. His defensive stats are almost the same as those from Sagna so I think we just have changed one French right back for another. The younger version of Sagna.
So a bit difficult this one for the AAA. They don’t like Wenger buying French players but this is an older French player. They don’t like Wenger buying unknown French players but this is a known French player. With one season and a half PL experience under his belt. An international player for France who even had more caps than Koscielny. So a rather un-typical Wenger signing maybe and so it will leave them bewildered and frustrated but I can imagine them coming up with some kind of negativity about Debuchy.
I think we at Untold will welcome him with open arms, as we always do.
Bienvenue Mathieu. Welcome Mathieu. Welkom Mathieu.
And in case you missed any of our recent excursions into the recent past…
- Can it ever get better than this? Arsenal v Tottenham.
- Starting the third Double, but we soon came down to earth.
- Do we need a new centre forward?
- Arsenal in the Uefa Cup final: 17 May 2000
- What happened on Henry’s first game for Arsenal?
- Beware the pre-season friendly – it tells you nothing.
– See more at: http://www.blog.woolwicharsenal.co.uk/#sthash.OnuMtzIr.dpuf