Arsenal prospect Francis Coquelin, 22, has endured one of the worst situations for a loan player.
Since his 2011 return to North London following a short-term stay at Lorient, Coquelin appeared to be one of the more promising players outside of Arsene Wenger's senior selection because of his break-up play in his favoured defensive midfield position, as well as his ability to play a utility role and provide competent cover in either of the full-back roles.
Since his stay at Freiburg, if anything, Coquelin has regressed.
Coquelin has registered a passing accuracy of 71% - amongst the lowest of all players in the squad - but has been forced to play in unfamiliar positions, notably left wing (six appearances), right wing (three) and attacking midfield (three). Only once has he featured in central midfield duty.
Producing key passes, providing assists and shooting were never attributes Coquelin excelled at and by taking him away from his natural defensive midfield role, he has struggled to make an impact on games (averaging less than 17 passes per match).
L'Equipe claim his loan spell in Germany may be cut short, yet the upper brass at Arsenal may be hopeful the player's development has not been stunted as there may well be options in England for Coquelin to enjoy regular first team football from now until the end of the season.
image: © wonker