Olivier Giroud: Bring Him Home!

Not Lacazette, not Ben Yedder, not Martial but Olivier Giroud has made it to the WC in Russia this summer. Didier Deschamps, the manager of the French national team, knows what Ollie brings to a football team: “He may not have all the qualities of the other attackers, but the way he plays makes the team stronger. And at the same time he remains effective.” It is so good to hear this from a different manager than Wenger who has always believed in this added value (and developed it further) of the man from the French Alps.

Verguisde spits Giroud evenaart Zidane en bewijst gelijk Deschamps

Giroud will turn 32 after the summer, so it is quite a feat to keep such good French attackers out of the WC squad. Over the years, we had many posts and discussions about what Giroud brought to the team. I liked to call him a Holding Attacker who plays with his back to the goal a lot and allows others to join the attack. He was an important part of our spine and allowed our midfielders to both release the ball to him and get themselves into dangerous positions. Ollie created space in congested defences and added unpredictability to our attacks. His aerial prowess was second to none and his sweet left-foot has both feeling and menace, and with his head, foot and back-heel he produced some fine assists and pre-assists for us, and many goals in the process too (105 goals/253 games).

I am delighted with the purchase of Aubameyang and I reckon he will be great for us next season. But we paid a price for his arrival as the deal was only done curtesy of Le Handsome moving to the Chavs and, at least for me, that was a bitter pill to swallow. We also weakened our chances to win the UEFA cup significantly last season, as Auba was ineligible for the competition and Ollie was wearing the all blue of Conte and Co from January onwards.

Giroud signed an (insulting) 18 months contract, so he only has a year left at Chelsea. I want him back at the Home of Football. For me, his technical, tactical and personal contributions are still of high value to the team. Conte needed to boost his CF options and Ollie was a safe bet, but given his short-term contract, his age and the likelihood that the Italian will leave this summer, it is unlikely that he has a real future there. Ollie should finish his career at Arsenal and we really need a quality super-sub who offers something different and comes on with real passion and impact.


Furthermore, we need a CF for the cup competitions so the league attackers can get a rest and Ollie is just the man for this. It is a no-brainer for me: bring him home and let him finish his career at the club where he belongs. I want to sing that song again.

By TotalArsenal.

32 thoughts on “Olivier Giroud: Bring Him Home!

  • TA, I am not sure if Ollie wants to return home, and under a different manager. He left in search of more playing minutes, so if we continue playing Laca and Auba, Ollie will be backup to them. Maybe the famous Supersub, but still he will get less minutes.

    It is true that he can be the cup CF for us, and he provides what Auba and Laca can’t. But still, will he want to play second fiddle? I don’t think so. At Chavs, he is able to get minutes due to their direct football, and we play differently, so he likes where he is now.

  • Well, TA, I made it a point to wake up early this morning to try and respond to comments on the previous post…only to find that you’ve moved on…towards sentiment for the dearly departed… Welcome to my world!!!

    I’m talking about Wenger, of course, but you seem more inclined towards players in the slow but sublime category (Cesc first, now Ollie). What about Nasri?… I think his drug ban will expire sooner or later… πŸ˜‰

    Here’s what I think… Selling Giroud in January whilst knowing that PEA was ineligible for the Ropy League AND that Lacazette needed surgery must mean that SIR Kroenke had less than zero belief in the big guy. Or, maybe (just maybe…) they were hoping to sabotage Wenger’s final semester in order to make the managerial change that might unite the fan-base and relieve the unbearable pressure on the players…to the tune of a dozen (or more…) extra points in the PL (see previous post)… So, like the post on Cesc back as translator-in-chief, the chances of Ollie back in our part of London seems zero percent…to me…

    Which doesn’t mean we can’t salute the guy, just that it’s never gonna happen…

    On the salute side, I do believe Giroud, though clearly a limited player, has gotten a LOT out of his game and that he can dovetail nicely with players that can use his fine screening hold up work (Santi, I thought did this best, and Cesc also seems to see the glory of it…) and his intelligent off the ball movement for both lofted or low passes if more direct attackers decide their shooting opportunities have gone. I hate to say this, but Hazard does this quite well and he quickly forged a good relationship with Ollie where he couldn’t find one with Morata. Unfortunately, our head down (or standing still) guy (Alexis) never appreciated Giroud, though, when at his laziest he’d loft up a hopeless chip in his direction.

    Frankly, I fully expect Chavs to extend his contract sooner than later, and they might have to make it a fairly sizable contract if France do well at the World Cup… Who knows, maybe he’ll end up with Wenger wherever the skinny professor fellow ends up… His call up to the WC (and his help in getting Chelsea the consolation prize cup) indicates that there’s still a role for “an old-fashioned English #9”) when ambitions are reasonably modest.

    SIR Kroenke and this Emery fellow, I bet, have very different plans, esp. with Sven’s attackers being his Dortmund dudes (PEA and Mkhi) who glide around the pitch at a completely different pace (faster) than Ollie ever could. I always appreciated Giroud’s size at set pieces but we’ll need to make due in the usual manner (with defenders). I think we’ll see even less Route One play (where Ollie was a decent target…though not as good as 25cm shorter Bacary Sagna…) and that we’re going much more toward a drilled system of play where it’s good to have certain “types” of guys in each position. If one guy goes down or is lacking form, try plugging in the next player. In other words, Laca can fill in for PEA and Welbeck (and Eddy too…and maybe even the guy everybody loves, Perez…) is closer to that style that Ollie ever could dream of being. The real target for Sven and Raul, I would guess, is another Dortmund success story (and Barcelona failure): Osmane Dembele. Bellerin the other direction as a make-weight?…

    Crystal balling in this vein is more fun than trying to defend my (not so sly…) demand that Wenger Out had better = magic (points gained in the PL table)… Cheers on that account…

  • Ah Total, it is better to have loved and lost, than to have never loved at all… πŸ˜‰

    Giroud only left us for a World Cup spot and who can blame him as he dovetails perfectly with disco dancing Greizmann, and at 32 this will be his swan song for the Jules Rimet trophy (better looking trophy with a better name)…

    I’m sorry compadre, I just can’t see the beautiful beard returning to North London, in fact it wouldn’t surprise me to see him return to France in 12 months time.
    At least his wife will know where he is… πŸ˜„

  • 84, he is likely to play second fiddle at the Chavs next season too. He never wanted to go but he was keen on going to the WC. He achieved that goal by leaving but there is every chance he will want to return to us.

  • Cheers Seventeenho πŸ™‚

    0%?! Very harsh. It really would not surprise me if Ollie rejoins us.

    Hahaha Kev, his wife is a saint πŸ™‚

  • Seventeenho, as the post had been out 24 hours or so and you had not responded to any of the comments, I thought it wasn’t going to happen any more…. Please feel free to use this post to respond to comments from the previous post if that works for you. πŸ™‚

  • T, Olivier may be second choice at Chelsea, but he would be 3rd at best for Arsenal. For me, 4th in line to start. I liked him for a change of pace late in games, but I don’t think he’d like that semi-retirement.
    …… I expect us to play a much different style, so his lack of pace wouldn’t be good if we want to win the ball back and counter quickly… So I wouldn’t want him starting in any Competition.

    To a point I made in the last discussion about Iwobi. I have seen more than enough. I wish I had seen that much of Gnabry, injuries largely to blame, but not completely.

    I love and champion our young players, but I prefer to see Nelson, Nketiah, Amen, and maybe others with upside potential that we haven’t seen much.

    To me, Iwobi, like welbeck, is a symbol of what arsenal became in the last couple years, likeable for the effort, but overall mediocre..

    Not to be harsh, but this is an opportunity for a new beginning, and we should be aiming much higher than players like that.

  • Auba, Laca, Welbz, Perez, Campbell, Akpom, Nketiah. Sorry TA, we are a bit too preoccupied deciding who and who to sell in the striker dept.

  • Hey TA… Very long work day yesterday so I couldn’t quite respond to those who commented on the previous post… (and I’m out the door here again… the horror….) Sorry, but thanks to those that did (write comments yesterday)…including J from NYC….

    Good to have to you back around…Though, of course, I think you’re being far too harsh on Iwobi. Given less to do, i.e., in a more structured system that requires him to take fewer touches (and omit all that static faking stuff…) and he might be able to focus on the quality of those touches. I know I’ll inspire cries of loco but I’d prefer to give him minutes over another academy grown MF who has been with the club a LOT longer… I Will (or would?…) name him but I’m Shier that that…

    These preferences seem important to us as we (both) keep coming back to them… We don’t matter so much and it’ll be inneresting, I think, who SIR Kroenke gives over to (the) Emery (board)…for some sanding off of the rough edges?… πŸ˜‰ (Sorry, that’s tortured even by my own standards…)

    On the topic at hand, however, I totally agree with your analysis about Giroud and that a desire to play a more consistent (and pacier) system rules him out of the future plans of those in charge at the club now…

    If we’d only wanted to have been generous to the player (give him a chance for playing time leading to a French Nat’l team call-up) wouldn’t we have loaned (not sold) him to Chavs?…

  • Hi Johnnie, Oliver will not be second in line at the Chavs next season. He was just a stop gap till the end of the season.

    Re Iwobi, lets agree to disagree. I have definitely have not seen enough of him πŸ˜‰

  • PE, Auba, Laca, Ollie….. etc etc. That would be the packing order. Given that Auba and Laca are very likely to play together a lot and a good team has a Plan B, Ollie would add real value. Bring him home!

  • The argument of pace does my head in. Pace is overrated and Ollie had to fight against this all his career. Pace around Ollie is important but not all have to be pacey. The hub in the middle is also important.

  • Shouldn’t the first question then be:
    Has Emery, ever, at any career stop employed a Giroud-like Plan B?
    (Can’t say, because I don’t know.)

    Second then:
    If Emery has not? Why would he now?

    Having always been a staunch defender of what Giroud brought to the team?
    But if playing regularly, at age 32, is Giroud’s aim– I’m not sure Arsenal is the place.


  • Quick responses… Does it matter if Emery has used a Giroud-esque plan B… I think there’s more wisdom to look at Dortmund’s CFs over the Sven-years (2006-2017)… Lewandowski is the closest thing I can think of… but he’s just a bit pacier…

    You may rate pace at a far lower level than others, TA–and in individual players I think you’re correct… (If you can spot a pass and move the ball quickly then you don’t need speed of foot…) Team pace, however, particularly in English football (where speed of play is synonymous with the brand…) is VERY critical. This season’s most “successful” teams (City and Pool) are very much based on pace. Pace to press the ball and get it back and then pace once they have it… Note the way other big fellas (Dzeko, Benteke, even Lukaku…not to mention Morata…) have suffered at the top of English football lately… My hunch is that this is the model for our football going forward but again, the proof will be in the pudding…

  • Lukaku is the outlier in your lineup HT.
    He started the season hotter than he finished– but he was ‘good’ this year. Perhaps the only ‘good’ big CF in the PL. Dzeko is the one I’ve always paralleled Giroud with. Similar skillsets. And why, I think Giroud might find better options for more minutes on the continent.

    Don’t think Giroud wants to end up as a sideshow attraction like Andy Carroll or Peter Crouch– just yet. πŸ˜‰


  • Arseblog reports (via The Times) that Arsenal have offered Ramsey a 5-year extension.


  • Is Kane fast, is Lukaku fast, Firmino fast? See I don’t notice/know. Speed is an overrated requirement for a CF imo. We don’t have a plan B/super-sub and for me it is a nooooo-brainer. πŸ™‚

  • Giroud never wanted to leave – so the sideshow thing is not relevant. He was asked to leave and he went for it reluctantly. He loved being at Arsenal and I bet he would come back in a heartbeat. We should not have let him go.

  • Ho ho…

    Let me disagree with about all:

    A. Giroud was one of our best in negative transition when we lost the ball. He would chase and cut off the hardest of all and set the example Ozil, of all folks, still follows – tho such is a German style in any event.. So, he was awesome in one aspect of transition.

    So, despite 8M posts lamenting defense, we are back to more goals is good and pace is more goals, and OG doesn’t have it and etc – aka positive transition game

    B. Pace in transition is a serious bonus, BUT, another p word is just as good or even better. Positioning… are you in the right spot when the ball turns over? It makes up what pace cannot. Ozil and OG, both did this well. It requires still moving when no one is looking or evaluating you so you don’t have to move much – auguring cries of laziness – when the time comes..

    Oh, and plenty of defenders these days have pace and a structured system of defending and space management (area access / denial) can minimise its effect…

    So, will he come back? Who the hell knows??? Is Emery’s type of player? Same… I do know we ar well stocked up front and we will see..

    What this post and replies bring out for me is how we have lacked a system and structure all over the pitch for awhile now. We’ve been strong on culture and principles but weak on the structure and systems to implement those broader ideals.

    So, we will see! All IMO of course

    Cheers β€” jgc

  • Whoo… That was a bit of a day and a 1/2 of work for an old guy like me… The homeowner just wouldn’t leave me on my own… Maybe I brought out the wrong drill… heheheh…as both Henry and Beavis might say… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mDqsgbtpDLk Maybe she just wanted some time on the couch… No, that’s wrong too…if you’ve got a dirty mind… The psychotherapist’s couch is what I meant… πŸ™‚

    Nice series of comments there, TA… Indeed ANYTHING is possible…so, I’ll take my bet from 0.00% up to 0.05%… If I’ve got my math right, I think I’m saying that–of the next 2000 players we buy–Giroud will be one of them… Bank on it…

    Nobody has responded to my notion that if there’d been ANY idea about bringing him back the deal would’ve been a loan… Are folks not reading my entire posts?… πŸ˜‰

    The Professor on transition positioning… Wow, that is some deep stuff… Somewhere out there MUST be some stats on counterattacking goals and my bet is that Arsenal are at the rock bottom of the top 6 teams (with maybe an exception or two) over the past 10 or 12 seasons… I blame Alexis (as always) but Giroud (during and before him) didn’t seem so strong in that regard… Did we score more in transition with RvP up front? I can’t recall, really… I do remember that awesome goal by Rosicky in the NLD and another by Cesc (in another NLD) from their kickoff… Compare it to the Invincibles, however, and I think transition play has been lacking big-time… https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x2ubhsj

    It’s all subjective for me, so over to you, stats people…

  • Viewed in the light of this post’s topic?
    With the caveat that my NewsNow feed is winnowed down to the barest of sources?
    I’ve eliminated (aka ‘hidden’) over 125 sites that would normally appear. Any site that has given off the slightest stench– gets the axe– not to be viewed again.

    So it is with some bases– that I’ll toss out a bit of gossip:
    Mario Ballotelli– could be interested in coming to Arsenal– on a free– when his contract expires June 30th.

    Ranked fifth in Ligue 1 last season with 18 goals at Nice.
    Now that? Is a proper sideshow. πŸ˜‰


  • JW,

    Innaresting but given it was shipping goals, not receiving them, that was the issue last year, one would hope we had a good reason? πŸ™‚

    Of course he is tough and strong, so conversion to Beast DM isnt out of the question.

    To sideshow your sideshow… πŸ˜€

    — jgc

  • This is what I wrote in the post above: “He was an important part of our spine and allowed our midfielders to both release the ball to him and get themselves into dangerous positions. Ollie created space in congested defences and added unpredictability to our attacks.” We had speed in the team through Theo and Alexis (and the full backs) but both were not willing/able to work with Giroud effectively. There will be plenty of speed around Giroud in the France team, and I am looking fwd to seeing Ollie play a vital part in their WC campaign.

    And agreed with jgc that the likes of Ollie and Ozil are brilliant at positioning and anticipating where the ball will come and that is why Ollie has been such a success at Arsenal and the French national team.

  • Loan or contract, Seventeenho, don’t matter to me. Bring him home. And when he does you will eat your builders hat! πŸ™‚
    Sounds like a stressful job – nobody wants to be checked all the time. Like Giroud there is a price to be paid for handsomeness. πŸ˜€

  • What is this Beast of a DM? I wish somebody can define it in full. I fear that what people have in mind is not there in the market. Is it a beast in winning the ball? That’s a destroyer which is completely out of fashion particularly for attacking teams in this age of high press. We had one in le Coq

    Is it a destroyer who is a creative ball player? Well, he doesn’t exist.

    We need a Micheal Carrick who is disciplined, who will always hold his position in front of the defence, who will never join the attack. Who without the ball is positionally spot on. Who with the ball can evade the press and initiate attacks. That’s what we need. An intelligent and disciplined ball playing holding mid.

  • PE, I think every def/mid that Arsenal are linked to, in the foreseeable future, will be compared to Patrick Vieira, as in, is so and so the new Patrick Vieira, can he be the new PV, have Arsenal signed the new PV, etc etc etc?
    Personally I’d be happy with a new Manu Petit or a new Edu or Gilberto Silva…

    Apparently Emery has said some interesting things about Rabiot recently and that he has great potential to be a D/M, so watch this space if Wilshere leaves?


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