French forward Olivier Giroud joined Arsenal in the summer 2012 from Ligue 1 Champions Montepellier where he scored 25 goals in 43 appearances.
It was a season that was the best of the 26-year-old's career so far. His record in France showed he is not only a goalscorer but also a provider who also impressed on his first international match for Les Bleus in which he also scored.
Giroud has started his life at the Emirates slowly with two goals and 4 assists in 10 appearances (starting five and starting five from the bench). Even so, it is a good record, showing he contributes over a goal per start.
His fellow Frenchman and Arsenal legend Thierry Henry went on to become one of the finest striker the Premier League has ever seen, some would say the best, but Arsenal's record goalscorer didn't score in his first seven matches for Arsenal.
Giroud is in the best place, under the guide of Arsene Wenger, who has guided many a player to successful careers, many of whom have been French; Henry, Pires, Vieira, Clichy, and currently Sagna, Diaby and Koscielny. (We'll ignore Squillaci).
Looking at Giroud's first season in Montepellier, when he signed from Tours he scored 14 goals. So he showed a level of progression, which indicates however well he does this year, the chances are he will get even better in future seasons.
With Wenger currently looking to Giroud to fill the boots of the former captain Robin van Persie, Giroud has a great task ahead of him and with more playing time and also confidence in front of goal, I predict he will be able to knock in 18 goals in all competitions this season for Arsenal.
How many do you think Giroud will score this season?
image: © ronnie macdonald