Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud has endured a frustrating campaign at the Emirates Stadium. In truth, the French international was always going to be back-up to international teammate Alexandre Lacazette this season.
However, the striker has stated that he came close to leaving Arsenal this summer. He told French TV channel Canal Plus: “I had the opportunity to leave [Arsenal],”
“I was very close to another English club, Everton. But I think I made the best choice.”
Should he have joined Everton?
In reality, Giroud would be playing far more first-team football at Everton than at Arsenal. In fact, the Toffees are crying out for a striker after losing Romelu Lukaku in the summer to Manchester United.
The Toffees were so sure that Giroud would join that boss Ronald Koeman and the men behind the transfers at Everton stopped looking for a new striker. Unfortunately, for the Merseysiders Giroud decided he wanted to stay in north London as a back up to Lacazette, which means they are now short of firepower.
The Toffees were handed a nightmare start to their Premier League and a lack of firepower now sees them sitting just above the drop zone with seven league games gone. It seems their dreams of finishing in the top six or even top four have gone up in smoke.
A decent backup
From an Arsenal point of view, Giroud is a decent backup. Even last season the French striker was just a backup player for much of the campaign but to Chilean star Alexis Sanchez. The summer purchase of Lacazette was a real kick in the teeth for the 31-year-old.
Giroud has not started a Premier League game this season but has appeared as a substitute in all seven league games, scoring once. His three starts this season were in the League Cup and the Europa League.
Giroud has a decent goal-scoring ratio for the Gunners, considering the amount of criticism that is sent his way, as 100 goals in 238 appearances is not a terrible record.
He was and never will be world-class. I am sure most Arsenal fans will feel that Lacazette is an improvement on the former Montpellier star. For me, Giroud still has a lot to offer Arsenal.
However, it seems that he would rather be a bit-part player at Arsenal than start at another Premier League club, which is a shame for the striker.
Should Olivier Giroud have joined Everton in the summer?