It was a known fact for quite a while, but only now Olivier Giroud is officially an Arsenal player, after the club completed a deal with Montpellier, the French champions, signing the French Ligue 1 top scorer last season for £13 million, becoming the third Frenchman on Arsene Wenger’s team.
Despite interest from Bayern Munich and Borussia Monchendgladbach along the way, Arsenal always looked like the first choice of destination for the 25 year old striker, who didn’t really get a chance to show his talents in Euro 2012, getting a total of 42 minutes in three appearances off the bench. But that’s Laurent Blanc problem about what he did and didn’t do wrong & right during the tournament.
Giruod scored a few spectacular goals this season for Montepellier, 21 in all, including a couple of screamers that were disallowed. Still, despite the great promise he has shown, I’m not so sure about him being the next big thing in terms of goals for Arsenal, having really been impressive for one full season. Shades of Gignac for Marseille (after one incredible season for Toulouse) or even Marouane Chamakh, who is on his way out from Arsenal, seem to be in play here as well, with the Giroud signing.
Giroud himself is delighted that he’s making the quick move on up from French Champion to a much bigger club.
I am delighted to be here at Arsenal and to be part of one of the great teams in English football. It’s a huge satisfaction to join this great club and it’s been a dream since I was young to play in the Premier League. I was attracted by the philosophy of football and Arsène Wenger’s ‘touch’ at this club. I have always admired Arsenal with its great history and reputation, and I now hope to achieve great things here. I’m very proud to be a Gunner and I will give my best for all the Arsenal fans.
Arsene Wenger wasn’t setting any kind of different tone – We are delighted to have secured the signing of Olivier Giroud. He has a very good physical presence and is exceptional in the air, with a great work ethic. We are excited about Olivier joining us and he will add an additional dimension to our attacking options next season. He has proved that he is capable of performing at the top level with club and country, and we saw what a big influence he was in Montpellier’s championship-winning side last season. We all look forward to Olivier joining us and seeing him play in an Arsenal shirt.
Arsenal are still trying to hold on to Robin van Persie, with the front regarding the Dutch man being rather quiet since the Dutch exit from Euro 2012, although insiders say that it’s going to be very difficult for the gunners to convince RVP from moving to Manchester City or Juventus, leading the chase for his talents.