Arsenal What can Arsenal expect from Giroud? Published 6 years ago on June 16, 2012 By Guest Share Tweet Arsenal are set to sign 25 year old striker Oliver Giroud from French side Montpellier, for £12 million but is he the man that can finally make the London side a title contender again? If Giroud is going to be a central figure in the Premier League he will have to force his way into a side that also have the attacking options of German international Lukas Podolski and potentially captain fantastic Robin Van Persie. This will be difficult but Arsenal have a history of making relatively unknown French players stars at the club. Most notable being Robert Pires, Patrick Viera and of course Thierry Henry. Oliver Giroud was the joint top scorer in Ligue 1 last season with 21 goals firing Montpellier to a shock title win in France. He also has 1 goal in 7 international caps for France, this was scored against the Germany for the opening goal in a French 2-1 win. Giroud has made it into Lauren Blanc’s Euro 2012 squad but has only played 15 minutes in the opening two group games, coming on for Benzema against Ukraine. The striker has only had one spell where he wasn’t very prolific in his career. From 2005-2008 he scored 2 goals in 23 for his first club Grenoble. In the 2007-2008 season though he had a loan spell at then French 3rd division side Istres and scored 14 goals in 33 games at just 20 years of age. In 2008 Giroud moved up to Ligue 2 and joined Tours. In his two years there he scored 24 goals in 44 games. Montpellier signed Giroud in 2010 for 2 million Euros (£1.6 million) but promised Tours that he could spend another year there on loan. The man from Chambery continued to impress for them scoring a further 6 goals in 17 games. Giroud made a good start to his Montpellier career scoring on his debut, and then going on to get a further 32 in 70 to further enhance his reputation. Despite his consistent good form in France he does have the tendency to suffer through minor goal droughts. During his loan spell at Istres he failed to score a goal in the months of November and December, key months in a league season and very busy in England. Can he cope with the pressure? His first spell at Tours didn’t get off to a flying start, not scoring his first goal for the club until October and during the same season he missed 3 games due to injury, played the following two games from the bench before re-aggravating the injury in training which forced him out for a further month. When his transfer to Montpellier was agreed later on in the season he failed to score for another three weeks. After this though he did manage to score in three consecutive games before suffering yet another barren spell, this time lasting 7 games. So, what can Arsenal fans expect from Oliver Giroud? A good goal scorer who’s is likely to have a slow start at the club. However he has the potential to be the next French wonder at the Emirates, hopefully he won’t follow in the footsteps of current flop Marouane Chamakh. Will Giroud be a success at Arsenal? Only time will tell. Related Topics: Up Next Super Mario on Everton’s radar? Don't Miss United’s New Boy: Nick Powell Guest Continue Reading You may like Arsenal Why Everton are the perfect club for Theo Walcott to rebuild his career Published 2 days ago on January 18, 2018 By Rob Meech It is hard to believe Theo Walcott is only 28 years old. He burst on to the scene aged 16 for Southampton in League One and was snapped up by Arsenal shortly afterwards. His inexplicable selection for England’s 2006 World Cup squad, without playing in a single Premier League game, transformed him into an overnight star. Big things have been expected of Walcott ever since. It’s fair to say that, despite winning 47 caps for England and making 397 appearances for Arsenal, he has failed to live up to the hype. Now, after 12 years, Walcott is bidding farewell to the Emirates and hoping to revive his flagging career under Sam Allardyce at Everton, whom he has joined for £20 million after agreeing terms on a three-and-a-half-year deal. Speculation that Walcott’s days at Arsenal were numbered had persisted for several years, but his desire to prove himself at the club kept him in north London even when admirers came calling. His 21 goals in all competitions in the 2012/13 campaign suggested he had cracked it, but that proved to be a false dawn. In truth, Walcott’s decision to sign for Everton was probably a no-brainer. Now in the prime of his career, he simply has to be playing regularly. The reality of how far down the pecking order he had fallen at Arsenal struck this season, when he often failed to make Arsene Wenger’s match-day squad. His last appearance for the Gunners came as a second-half substitute in the 2-1 defeat to Bournemouth. Everton’s interest in Walcott emerged only recently, but he was clearly one of Allardyce’s top targets. One look at the Toffees’ recent form underlines why. After an immediate upturn in fortunes after the former England boss’s appointment, Everton have embarked on a winless streak that stretches back to December 18. Lack of pace is a pressing concern and this is an attribute that Walcott possesses in abundance. The likes of Wayne Rooney and Gylfi Sigurdsson are intelligent footballers, but not the type that will blitz opposition defenders. Instead, they have relied on chipping balls over the top for the striker to chase. As such, Everton are one-dimensional and easy to play against, with no player capable of launching a counter-attack. Also highlighting their urgent need for more firepower is the grim statistic that only rock-bottom Swansea have had fewer shots than Everton this season. New big-money signing Cenk Tosun has increased competition in the striking department but may take time to settle, whereas Walcott’s Premier League pedigree means no transitional period will be needed. The former Southampton man’s versatility makes him an attractive proposition. For Arsenal, he predominantly featured on the right wing – either in a four-man midfield or a three-man attack – but he is equally adept at playing up top on his own, a position where he tried but ultimately failed to establish himself at the Emirates. Potential is a word that has long been associated with Walcott. It is no longer applicable. At 28, this is possibly his final chance to realise his ambitions, both domestically and internationally. Everton, a sleeping giant, are a perfect fit. Under the auspices of major shareholder Farhad Moshiri, plans are in the pipeline for a brand-spanking new stadium to enable them to compete alongside the Premier League’s elite. After being a peripheral figure at Arsenal for so long, Walcott has become the forgotten man of English football. For the sake of his career, he simply had to leave north London. By joining Everton, Walcott, who will wear the number 11 shirt, has the security of working under a manager who rates him highly. Now, he has the opportunity to become the player he always promised to be. Continue Reading Arsenal Bournemouth 2-1 Arsenal: Three talking points from the Vitality Stadium Published 6 days ago on January 14, 2018 By Rob Meech Photo: Reuters Bournemouth came from behind to claim a much-needed victory over Arsenal, whose hopes of qualifying for the Champions League have suffered another blow. After an insipid opening period at the Vitality Stadium, the action sparked into life when Hector Bellerin broke the deadlock on 52 minutes. But Arsenal’s lead was short-lived, as goals from Callum Wilson and Jordon Ibe – his first for the club – secured the Cherries’ fourth home win of the season, which lifted them to 13th in the table. Arsenal, meanwhile, slipped further adrift in the battle to finish in the top four after their third consecutive league game without a win. Here are three talking points… Alexis Sanchez moves closer to the Emirates exit door All the pre-match talk centred on a player who wasn’t involved in the contest. Not only was Alexis Sanchez not named in the starting XI, he wasn’t even on the bench having not travelled to the south coast. Manager Arsene Wenger was ambiguous when pressed on this in the aftermath of the defeat, but the insinuation was clear; the want-away Chilean will not be an Arsenal player come the end of the transfer window. Both Manchester City and Manchester United have been heavily linked with a move for Sanchez, whose contract at the Emirates expires in the summer. Despite his uncertain future, this match was crying out for his never-say-die attitude. Arsenal controlled the first half and deserved to be in front when Bellerin fired home. However, the Gunners were unable to add a second and Bournemouth capitalised with two late efforts. Arsene Wenger’s side are now without a win in four games in 2018 as their troubles mount. Bournemouth buck the trend against the ‘Big Six’ Before this fixture, Bournemouth had lost all of their matches against the ‘Big Six’ this season, scoring only one goal in seven outings. While those are not necessarily the games that will define their campaign, it was a worrying statistic that Eddie Howe needed to address. Facing an Arsenal team without Sanchez or Mesut Ozil looked like being the Cherries’ best opportunity to buck that trend, and so it proved. With only nine points separating all the teams in the bottom half, an unexpected win can do so much to alter the picture. The Cherries didn’t fold after going a goal behind and they merited the three points for an enterprising second-half display. Having beaten Arsenal for the first time in their history, Bournemouth are now four points clear of the drop-zone. They are by no means safe because of this result, but the psychological impact could be immense. Jack Wilshere getting back to his best Returning to the club at which he spent last season on loan, this was not the afternoon Jack Wilshere would have hoped for. Though it didn’t go well from a team perspective, the 26-year-old was close to his best at the Vitality Stadium. He touched the ball more than any other player on the pitch and also completed more passes. After a frustrating start to the campaign where he struggled for minutes in the Premier League, Wilshere is now establishing himself in the starting XI. He was Arsenal’s best player against Bournemouth and in a team that lacks leaders, he was one of the few who looked like he wanted the ball. Wilshere ran the show in midfield and was always keen to move forward with purpose. England manager Gareth Southgate surely can’t ignore Wilshere’s form and, fitness permitting, he must be a shoo-in for the next squad. In a World Cup year, Wilshere is peaking at just the right time. Continue Reading Arsenal An absence of progress at Arsenal leaves Arsene Wenger in danger of becoming the villain Published 6 days ago on January 14, 2018 By Martyn Cooke Photo: Reuters “You either die a hero, or live long enough to see yourself become the villain”. So says Harvey Dent, a character in the 2008 DC Comics action movie The Dark Night Rises, which portrays the story of the fictional superhero Batman as he fights against organised crime in Gotham City. There may be no men dressed as bats around the Emirates Stadium but it is a quote that might resonate with the thoughts and feelings of a growing number of Arsenal supporters regarding the position of Arsene Wenger in recent seasons. The Frenchman is one of the most influential and successful managers in the club’s history, having secured ten major trophies since his appointment in 1996 and overseen the transition from Highbury to the Emirates Stadium, but has come under increasing pressure over the last three seasons as The Gunners struggle to maintain the pace set by their title rivals. The previous campaign was tainted by calls from from a portion of the Arsenal fan base for the 68-year-old to resign, although the club eventually opted to hand him a new two-year deal. However, eight months on and Wenger’s position has never been more fragile and the number of dissenting voices in the stands is beginning to increase. The frustration around the Emirates Stadium is completely understandable. The Gunners are 23 points behind league leaders Manchester City, face an uphill task to qualify for the Champions League next season and suffered an early exit from the FA Cup at the hands of Nottingham Forrest. Furthermore, Arsenal are in danger of losing two of their prize assets in the summer for nothing after allowing the contracts of Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil to run down into their final year. The unwillingness of the duo to remain in North London is a definitive sign that the club are no longer considered to be a significant threat in the domestic game. With the club slipping behind their title rivals and struggling to retain key players, Wenger is in danger of turning from a hero into a villain. A lack of forward momentum The one thing that Arsenal have lacked this season, and arguably for a number of years, is a sense that the club is making progress or moving in the right direction. The Gunners have been on a gradual decline that is only now beginning to come to the fore and there has been nothing to suggest that Arsene Wenger has the vision or prowess to reinvigorate a club that is anchored in stagnation. Even success in the FA Cup has felt like a brief moment of respite rather than a signal that a corner had been turned. The Frenchman has failed to correct the issues that have undermined the team on the pitch, exemplified by his inability to purchase a top-quality central defender or defensive midfielder, and it has now been nearly thirteen years since the club last won the Premier League title. A sense of progress is why Jurgen Klopp and Mauriccio Pochettino have sustained their positions at Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur, respectively, despite failing to secure any silverware between them and have retained the favour of their club’s supporters. Both have implemented a clear philosophy and playing style whilst creating the feeling around Anfield and Wembley that the team is moving forward in the right direction. Wenger has secured more silverware than both Klopp and Pochettino combined since 2014 yet he finds himself under increasing pressure due to a lack of any forward momentum at the Emirates Stadium. Whilst there is a general feeling that Liverpool and Tottenham are improving, the perception of many Arsenal supporters is that the club is standing still at best and certainly slipping behind their counterparts. There have been question marks around Wenger’s future for some time and yet this feels like the 68-year-old is on the edge of cliff. Success in the FA Cup has provided him with a degree of respite in recent years which made his team selection for the defeat to Nottingham Forrest appear especially bizarre. With Arsenal already out of the title race you would have thought that Wenger would have put extra emphasis on winning the competition which, arguably, allowed him to negotiate a new contract in the summer. However, such is the obvious disparity in quality between the Gunners and Manchester City that Wenger can no longer hide behind domestic cup success. Failure to qualify for the Champions League for a second consecutive year would signify how far the club has fallen and the pressure on the Frenchman has been further exacerbated by the seemingly imminent departures of Sanchez and Ozil. Whilst Liverpool and Tottenham are moving forward, Arsenal seem to be moving backwards. With Wenger’s position appearing increasingly fragile and the club in decline you have to wonder whether the Frenchman has now become the villain of the piece. Continue Reading Football News 24/7 Advertisement Trending Manchester United2 days ago Paul Pogba defies critics as his incredible Manchester United record marches on Liverpool6 days ago Are Liverpool potential 2017/18 Champions League winners? Champions League6 days ago Are Chelsea potential 2017/18 Champions League winners? 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