Wenger pays tribute to Olivier Giroud

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Arsene Wenger says the fact he felt comfortable bringing on Olivier Giroud in last night’s defeat to Swansea, despite the player being on the cusp of a move to Chelsea, is a tribute to the striker’s commitment to professionalism.

Giroud is expected to move across London in the coming hours as Arsenal make room in their squad for Gabon international Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Unlike Alexis Sanchez who moved to Manchester United earlier in the transfer window, the boss didn’t mind including his compatriot in his matchday squad one last time.

“It’s a tribute to Olivier, yes [that I could play him],” said Wenger after the 3-1 defeat.

“He is a guy who gave great service to the club, he never let us down on the commitment front and he saved us many times.

“I have absolutely no doubt that when I ask him if he is ready to commit and he says yes, I have no problem with that. That is why I put him on, because it was needed and unfortunately he couldn’t help us.”

While the boss wouldn’t give a definitive answer about whether Giroud’s move was happening, he did admit he’ll be sad to see the attacker leave the Emirates.

“Yes. I have personally, of course, taken him from Montpellier and he became a strong, regular international player for France and we have gone together through good and bad. But always I believe his behaviour has been top, top class and the respect is more linked to that than to all the rest.”

He added: “Olivier is an Arsenal man and after that he needs to play as well. He has not played many games in the Premier League since the start of the season and he is a regular player in the French national team.

“There is a World Cup where France will go, the places are of course very difficult to get and at some stage it was a difficult situation for him. But he always had his heart 100 per cent in the team and he was committed.”

Giroud turned down the chance to move to Everton and West Ham this summer but has since seen his game time mostly come in the Europa League and Carabao Cup. While he was offered a chance to play for Borussia Dortmund as part of the deal to land Aubameyang, he’s decided to keep his family in London.

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81 Comments on "Wenger pays tribute to Olivier Giroud"

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Twisted cuntloks

While the boss wouldn’t give a definitive answer about whether Giroud’s move was happening, he did admit he’ll be sad to see the attacker leave the Emirates.

He is talking in past tense so it’s a bit obvious it is happening

Double98

Its no surprise that he speaks in this way – Giroud is going. the only thing that will stop that is if aubamayang fails his medical.

he is 31 – wengers limit so he was never long for this club.

Sean

Cazorla? Flamini? Rosicky?

Asrar Ahmed

I guess I am one of the few who is saying good riddance to more deadwood

ForeignGooner

And I guess you’re football knowledge is based on FIFA games?

Vernazza

He is quality there too!

rohit

Yes, you are. Might very well be the only one, for that matter.

Asrar Ahmed

He will score 5 goals in straight league matches then spend 15 games without scoring. He is an international class striker but due to sentiment fans are looking at him as some sort of world beater. He was a good option on the bench but that is all he really was, let’s not kid ourselves.

joedisco

Then why not keep him on the bench for rest of season instead of sell him at knockdown price to top-4 rival who are struggling for goals right now…? Makes NO sense. Giroud will no doubt score the goal that ensures Chelsea beat us to a top 4 slot on the last day of season (yes, being optimistic here), while the Ox does same for Liverpool and Alexis at Man Utd. Can anyone remember a season where we’ve sold 3 players to 3 rivals for the top 4?

Daniel+Davidson

The only*

dcgooner

deadwood.. how easily we throw around words. Did you know that Olivier Giroud is one of the most efficient strikers in the world in terms of goals per minute? go look up the statistics. compare him to any of the big name strikers you think are amazing. http://www.Squawka.com

In the last two years he’s averaged over .85 goals per 90 minutes.

joedisco

While Danny just keeps his head down and hopes no-one notices he’s still in the squad until the transfer window closes.

Daniel+Davidson

I just can’t stomach this one. Firstly we strengthen our nemesis club and weaken our vague hope of top four. Secondly we won’t have OG12 to depend on in the latter stages of the Europa. Thirdly he is moving from one bench to another as Morata is first choice there. I love Olivier. He seems like a proper arsenal Man and I’m sure the squad will miss him too. We’ve sold so many goalscorers this window. Crazy and sad times. ☹️

ForeignGooner

I liked to think of Giroud as an Arsenal icon, that idea is now gone.

darth binks

most happy for auba but this sucks.

Shitbird

At the rate things are going I bet he fancies his chances of taking Morata’s place.

Aubameyangadingdong

I agree that we’re strengthening man u and chelski, can you see us catching them this season cos I can’t. Our only way into the champs league thru the league is to finish 4th by catching pool or s***s, which is more achievable with these signings (apart from last nights clusterfuck).

SizC

Wenger “needed” to call on him yesterday….erm…..what about next week and the week after.

I always say him as plan b, so annoyed he is leaving.

Pakgooner

OG12 forever in our hearts. We love you, your hold up play and one touch exchanges with Jack will never leave my mind long after you retire from the sport. You are and always will be an Arsenal man for us Oli. I hope you do well wherever you go and win the WC with the French team, and wish your family blessings for the future. Damn giroud you’ve left me emotional.. love from Pakistan

Viva la prof

I really wish he wouldn’t go to Chelsea, but it’s not his fault.. he’ll deserve all the applause available if he plays against us. He looked emotional when he came on. Or I was emotional looking at him through emotional glasses.. either way there was emotion ?

Indian Gooner

Giroud is an accomplished striker in the Premier League. Auba and Lacazette both are new and are yet to prove themselves in this league. For me Giroud leaving just doesn’t bode well!

David C

can we sell Cech back to Chelsea instead? Maybe giant Giroud can play keeper, haha.

Newxieland

Gotta say the guy’s done really well at Arsenal given the lack of fanfare at his initial arrival. 18m for him is an absolute steal!

People will moan about price being too cheap, strengthening a rival etc etc but after seeing today’s performance against Swansea it’s not like we’ll be overtaking Chelsea if we kept him.

Happy to see Auba arrive… all we need now is to sort out our midfield, defence and goalkeeping situation by the end of today’s transfer deadline!

Shambles

Don’t forget the managerial and board positions..

Twatsloch

18 mil from that oligarch oppressor cunts club is an INSUIT!

renaissancerosicky

All the best Olivier! Best man we’ve had for a while now.

Mongolian Gooner

Wish him all the best, except of course that he’ll lose every single game he plays in from now until the day he leaves Chelsea.

Alessandro

Actually I think they still have Spurs and Liverpool coming up, he might yet help us out by taking some points off them.. who knows.

Man Manny

Goodbye Olivier; you gave your all for the club you love. It was always there to see on your handsome face everytime you crossed the white line. I wish you – and only you – all the best.

Alexandre

Im gutted. I Will miss that sexy man. And selling him to Chelsea is a bad idea…

Twatsloch

I will never cease to be utterly disgusted by this!

Mississippi Gunner

Me neither. Giroud was my favorite player. I watched him play with strength, underrated skill, and my favorite quality of his: heart for the club. Oh, and handsomeness. I thought he could have formed a really dangerous striker duo with Lacazette if given the chance. But he wasn’t given the chance. I guess that’s how we repay a player who has played for the shirt for all his prime years. Hand him over him to a fucking direct enemy in Chelsea (ugh!) for 18 mil.

This has been the hardest time for me as a fan since I started watching every game in 2011 (I know, boo hoo, that’s not a long time–point is, as we all know, there’s been a lot of hard moments in that time frame). Honestly, Auba’s arrival isn’t nearly as sweet as it would have been if Giroud wasn’t leaving. If I felt like there was hope or a clue for this season or the next, and the same problems weren’t seemingly guaranteed to continue–defense is still shit and getting thinner; team selection and management still bizarre; still losing 3-1 or 2-1 to mid-table teams like Swansea last night in shambolic fashion; still putting our players in rival team shirts. I could go on. As somebody said on here last night: I love Arsenal. Subsequently, I hate myself.

Oli, it was a pleasure man. It’s fucking disgusting that you’ll have to play in blue, but I wish you the best.
P.S. I’m staying with my Dad in West Malling for a while. Apparently, they don’t televise games on regular channels like they do in America. :/. Thought you Britons liked ‘football’..

Twatsloch

Totally agree and only one thing to add to that. Judging by the way Aubameyang has behaved at Dortmund we could, goals aside, be in for a rocky ride ride with him. He may be a great player but in terms of loyalty and respect for his club he appears to be seriously wanting. Us being used to Giroud we might find ourselves very frustrated.

Mississippi Gunner

You’re right. OG showed loyalty to us this past summer, for example. For all the talk by us fans about how rare it is to see these days. Ha. So, we trade loyalty for someone with questions about theirs.. I gotta stop thinking about it.

Jack WilXhaka

Top top lad. I wish him all the best at Chelski, only not when playing against Arsenal

Lord Bendnter

He is leaving to Chelsea…
Not that long ago, Everyone would have been so pissed at even the thought of such a thing. And we should still be pissed

But it really goes to show you how our club’s value has dropped down even in our fans’ eyes. That’s what happens when you have a consistently crap performing team, a manager that everyone wants gone but can’t get rid of, players that stopped playing for the manager one season ago, owners that prize money over glory, coachless coaches, amateur contract negotiators, extremely high match fees, and a dire realization we are no longer a top, top club…

Lord Bendnter

It’s like you come to a point where you just don’t give a sh*t anymore

Twatsloch

The whole affair is disgusting!

Who to, who to, Who to be
Who to, who to, Who to be

Another perspective…. First off im a huge Giroud fan and i certainly dont want for him to leave, least of all to Chelsea! That being said, look at the bigger picture – we are selling one of our rivals one of our aging squad players with the view for him to help out their first team. Does that not indicated we are certainly still on the same level as Chelsea if not higher? no more yossi on loan or chasing a bang average Demba Da – the tables have turned so to speak…. thoughts?

Twatsloch

To me it indicates that we’ve helped one of the cuntiest clubs in the PL, the one that on so many occasions turned us over through various antics, when they needed it. Regardless who comes that will never sit well with me.

Lord Bendnter

Giroud is no Yossi. Giroud has tons of goals in him still. He is a brilliant player. I just don’t see how you can sell him to a team you are competing with for a top four position, let alone, and dare I say, a potential title race next season. I wished he would have moved to West Ham or Palace, since he wants to stay at London. And, he would be getting way more game time there. Again, if I was Roy, I would have pushed very hard to land Giroud.

Twatsloch

West Ham and Palace are both clubs I can respect whereas Chelsea, no fucking way! With the very odd exception a club by cunts for cunts!

A Different George

If West Ham or Palace had a striker that could be loaned to Dortmund, it might have worked. In effect, we got Aubameyang for Giroud, and Chelsea got Giroud for Batshuayi. So I think it is fair to say that Chelsea got stronger, and we got much stronger.

I hate to see Giroud go, but he needs to play before the World Cup, he wants to stay in London, not go to Germany, for family reasons, and there was no other way for us to get Aubameyang.

SurreyGooner

I dont understand. If Giroud wanted game time, surely West Ham would be the better option if they were prepared to cough up the cash. More of a guaranteed start there than Chelsea. Wish he was staying with us. Ultimately I think he’s suffered from a lack of service when he’s come on. Good luck to him

Jeff

I don’t think if he is playing for West Ham will earn him a chance against Arsenal and PSG starter striker. He must have felt his chance is higher for him to play in world cup if he join Chelsea giving the shit form Morata is having now.

Donald\'s Trump

Yes because Lacazette is in cracking form right now.

A Different George

West Ham might be fine for Giroud, but it didn’t solve Dortmund’s problem–either get another striker or keep Aubameyang. Chelsea could solve that problem.

Arsenalfanman

Giroud’s always behaved impeccably and even if he ends up at that awful place with blue shirts I’ll still like him. The only reason he’s leaving is because we’re forcing him to so we can sign a better player and his first choice probably wouldn’t have been Chelsea but that’s the only way the transfer merry-go-round will happen.

BODMAS

NO PLEASE. DM PLEASE…

Gudaffiduck

Nope still not happy about this… 🙁

Robins Boost

Transfer dealings are solidifying as the window is closing today.
Coq, theo, alexis, giroud out
Auba, micky in.
Now we still have a few mors hours.
Lets work to bring in 1 CB, 1 CM, a new CEO, new Manager, new assistant manager, 6 new coaches and 25-30 new physios just in case.

Red-Wing

Hm, all other things aside, will he get enough minutes at Chelsea though? Morata will definitely stay their number 1 striker and Hazard has played there on different occasions as well.

Even though he goes to Chelsea which is really heart breaking, I wish him great personal success (just not at a club level). Also, it just shows you what a great man Wenger is.

Thanks Ollie, you will be missed.

pedro

Only way I could stomach this is if we got the cash plus Abramovich and some sort of spell that would make me as handsome as Giroud. Terrible piece of business, Giroud will be scoring goals for the Chavs for the next two seasons without trouble. Proven goal scorer in the league and a good team member, why the fuck do we insist on helping out rivals?

Wojciech

Didn’t expect Giroud to let go first team opportunity at Dortmund to play 2nd fiddle at Chelsea. Him even wanting to move to Chelsea makes me cringe, given how many times he tapped and kissed the badge.

Lula

I like Giroud, but no-one plays in a Chelsea and is called an Arsenal man.

pedro

The guy has a family to think of and the club are selling him, he’s not driving this.

Danny

I agree. He’s been great for us but joining Chelsea will definitely pour some cold water on his legacy here.

Pedro

What surprises me about Wenger is his unwillingness to rotate strikers in the league. Would help everyone remain motivated and competitive. Right now Lacazette is not at his best and it would have been perfect to challenge him to improve by offering game time to Giroud.

It’s sad seeing him go. Even more sad knowing he’s joining Chelsea. And the worst bit is I’ll still be cheering for him with a lump in my throat even in blue colors for being such a great professional.

David Hillier\'s luggage
David Hillier\'s luggage

I suspect Giroud would have got some Prem game time over Xmas if he wasn’t injured. A lot of players new to the league hit a wall around then (remember we gave Alexis a mini winter break once), and it feels like Lacazette is suffering from this at the moment.

Donald\'s Trump

Classic Wenger.

ArsenAlan

Have to say itll be a thorn in my side to hear Chelsea scum singing the Giroud song. And they will sing the same one, cos they’re cunts.

Average Joe

This bad! Bad business! Giroud is class! I’m more upset with this than that Alexis deal…

Matt+P

I really really hope we don’t sign David fucken Luiz…I think I will give up if we do

GoonerOz

The wrong Frenchman is going. And to sell to one of our main rivals for a pisspoor £18 million is insulting all round. Sorry, Olivier, you gave of your best and this is how the club treated you.

Come back to the five \'n\' dime NickyB NickyB
Come back to the five \'n\' dime NickyB NickyB

So that’s Sanchez and Giroud gone. How the fu*k is that a successful transfer window? And we get turned over by Swansea!

It was clear very early on that we couldn’t play through them so, it should have been Giroud on and crosses into the box.

After a result like that, it’s difficult having faith in this team to achieve anything this season.

gibir

Sad. Underrated by an overrated manager.

Sandman

Underused, maybe. But underrated? Never. Atleast by Arsene.

And OVERRATED manager? R.U.SERIOUS.BRO?

gibir

An ambitious club would have fired him already.

Stevec

Gutted to see him go. Loves the club and a severely underrated player. Would have given us a great alternative and don’t see him getting any more game time at Chelsea than with us.
Thanks for everything Oli. Just sad to see you go

Sandman

Sad and bad as this is, I seriously hope that DA OG is only being loaned to Chelsea till the end of the season (for his WC hopes).

No way my soul will accept TWO of our TOP TOP players being sold to our rivals who happen to be in increasing order of despicable traits. And that too in the middle of the season!

jon

Thank you, Oliver! It’s a sad day for gooners, no matter which club you leave for.

shokim

Farewell, Oli. Thanks for the memories. You were always the gentleman and always gave your best. I’ll always remember that scorpion kick. Good luck!

Anthony

Surely now is the time for the Arsenal fax machine to develop a fault.

Mark

Wherever he goes I wish him the best of luck, but would be far easier to cheer him on if he were at Dortmund vs having to root against him at Chlesea. Hopefully he will get his wish and be able to get more playing time to earn that spot on the WC squad. Being able to get any money for him (even if less than 20 million) is not that bad for a striker of his age. If we do get that much for him it will pretty much be a wash with what we’ve spent on Aubameyang vs what we brought in from selling Walcott, Coquelin, Giroud and that young guy (forget his name) to Barcelona. Hopefully that will leave funds we earned last Summer plus the standard funds available for Summer transfers to fix the areas of the squad so badly in need of upgrades.

Bern pero

A shame he has to go because of the man he is keeping out of the French national team …… I fear we’ve been sold a pup yet again …?

daniel

really hope watford, west ham or crystal palace come in with a better offer last minute, would be painful seeing giroud turn out for chelsea, hes been one of our best most reliable players the last few years, and im sad to see him go

Shitbird

HFB! It’s raining in my heart.

Is anyone out there enough of a prick to boo him next year when he shows up in blue? I hope not.

Big T

Danny Welbeck anyone?

KW gooner

I feel so damn empty… ill miss you giroud honestly some great memories you deserve to be thrlwn to chelsea… Us fans we will love you for life…. ehose uo to sack York! I mean the board! Braveheart style!

LeBruv

Club supporters gave him the stick for no good reason. Commitment was never an issue but we took him for granted. By that logic, it’s tough not to wish him the very best even though we know where he’s ended up.

From a purely footballing perspective, the mind boggles because he’s very much in his prime.

santori

More plan B nonsense from Tim today.

Giroud is not a super sub.

He has only been so this season and it is frankly a mistake.

The problem with Wenger is he wants to be free of the way we have to play with GIroud.

But many times, GIroud simply is more effective for us when teams are stacking players in and around their box.

He is a different weapon rather than a plan B as can be seen by his goal scoring record even with the shiny new and more mobile Lacazette in place this season.

And of course we’ve foolishly let him go to a rival for fourth. Imagine if he scores that one goal that makes the difference in GD that dictates CHelsea grabbing fourth over us in the end.

Nor does it help our other route to CL in the europa competition. Aubameyang is cup tied. Now imagine if Lacazette gets hurt. Danny Welbeck plan C.

Giroud over the years has been criticised for lack of pace.

Even this is a bit of a simplistic assessment if not a red herring.

Has Lacazette frankly been that much quicker around the pitch?

Over last couple of season, Giroud has worked hard to get leaner to be more mobile. BUT its his experience and positioning that makes up for his lesser attribute in ‘pace’.

He pre-empts his lack of pace by knowing where to be.

This is no more illustrative than how he moves toward the ball and the front of post instead of waiting for it to come to him, something Lacazette is guilty of.

Also a question mark now surrounds our defense. Principally, no Jack no outlet for them to play out and the defenders (they should not) then make silly judgement calls and high risk passes to try and play out from the back.

As none of the mid sans Jack can turn with the ball to save their lives (see Granit, Ramsey and Elneny), the ball invariably gets passed back into defense and the opponents start to close down space.

The other option of course is to hoof the ball long.

BUT again, where Giroud provided us the ability to receive and hold, Lacazette does not.

There is a reason why Deschamp started Giroud ahead of Lacazette for the National set up (something he may ironically be in strong contention again with the move to Chelsea and CL feature potentially)

It remains to be seen if the new addition Aubameyang is better had providing an outlet and holding the ball for us up high.

Meanwhile we have lost an important asset and different type of tool to unlock deep entrenched defenses.

A plan B he was not.