The Arsenal fans here in the Football Transfer Tavern are still split over the future of striker Olivier Giroud, with some thinking it’s about the right time for the Frenchman to move on.
However, just as they seem to be winning over the punters, our landlord drops in making it clear that the Gunners must do all they can to keep hold of the forward.
The 30-year-old has been heavily linked with a move across the capital to join east Londoners West Ham as manager Slaven Bilic looks to add experience and goals to his side which so under-performed last season.
However, it is exactly that experience and knack in front of goal which Wenger will need so much at times in the new season, making the French international imperative to his squad.
Regardless as to who Wenger brings in over the summer, whether it be the likes of Kylian Mbappe or Alexandre Lacazette, none of them can offer that which Giroud brings, a markedly different approach to the game.
Whilst those who may arrive at The Emirates this summer love nothing more than finding the space in behind their opponents and playing off the shoulder, there is no one else in the Gunners squad more capable of physically toying with defenders and either setting up a teammate or finding the net himself.
This is not to say that Giroud’s style is direct, physical or ugly, in fact his goal for Les Bleus a couple of weeks ago proved that he can turn on the flair when he wishes;
Olivier Giroud's excellent goal vs. Sweden last night. pic.twitter.com/BrARaUzPbN
— Goals (@PremHighlightz) June 10, 2017
The striker brings a different approach, another option and is more often than not a match winner for Arsene Wenger, it’s worth noting that it took 38 seconds from his being brought on at Wembley for Giroud to setup Aaron Ramsey’s FA Cup winning goal against Chelsea.
So, taking all that into account. While it may seem beneficially to take the Hammers’ money and run for a player who will sit on the bench for large parts of the season, Wenger could rue the day he lets Olivier Giroud leave the club.