Having scored twice in the 2-0 win over West Brom last night, Alexandre Lacazette might have fancied his first Arsenal hat-trick, and while he did have a couple of chances, that opportunity was finished when he was taken off in the 8nd minute and replaced by Olivier Giroud.
The French international has only once completed 90 Premier League minutes for his new club, on the opening evening when we beat Leicester 4-3, but has been substituted every game he’s started in since.
It seems like Arsene Wenger is building him up slowly in a more physically demanding league, and he explained why he took him off on Monday night.
“I took him off because he was tired,” he said. “He had an opportunity to score a hat-trick but I gave him the penalty as well.
“So overall, what you want is to win the game and not to take any gambles because if they come back to 2-1 it can be nervy in the end.
“So when the guy is a bit tired and when you have Giroud on the bench, you know you might have to defend on set pieces or Giroud can score the third goal.”
The Arsenal manager also revealed why he’d nominated Lacazette as the team’s penalty taker should they be awarded a spot kick, and whether or not he’d remain the designated taker.
“Yes, until now I gave them to him,” said Wenger. “I observed him a little bit because we work well on penalties in training and I think he took his penalty well tonight.”