Olivier Giroud has given us some of this season’s big surprises, but not for the right reasons.
With Arsenal failing to sign an established striker in the summer and Danny Welbeck sidelined until the New Year, it seemed like this was the perfect time for the Frenchman to make his mark.
The 30-year-old hit three goals at Euro 2016, helping his country all the way to the final, so all the indications were that he was looking sharp going into the new campaign.
Of course, his busy summer meant he needed extra rest in the early stages, particularly once Arsene Wenger had learned a harsh lesson after rushing back Aaron Ramsey – who has only just returned to training.
Incredibly, Giroud has played a grand total of 78 minutes so far, but Wenger has urged him not to worry.
“I am an admirer of Giroud because he has gone through some tough times and he bounces back,” Wenger said, via the Guardian.
When his back is to the wall, he has an answer every time. When I go into a big game, you always think: ‘I can rely on him.’ You know that when the competition starts, he will be with you.”
“Before the (Euros) competition, the (French) supporters didn’t want him,” he added.
“But he turned them around. That’s one of the strengths of Olivier. He is mentally very strong.”
The striker will need to keep his chin up as he is now out with a toe injury which he aggravated in the win over Chelsea. Though he is yet to score in the league this season, the lack of depth in Arsenal’s squad means he will surely be given chances, so it is good to see Wenger putting his faith in his compatriot.