Who replaces Olivier Giroud up front for Arsenal after red-card?

Theo Walcott? Lukas Podolski? Or does somebody else provide the option while the Frenchman sits out for three games?

Arsenal continue to push toward what at one point seemed a very unlikely Champions League place. The win against Fulham at Craven Cottage on Saturday will certainly not go into the video archives as an example of Arsenal brilliance but it was one of those games that six months ago they would have drew; since beating Bayern Munich in March this Arsenal team are made of more.

However the result did come with an obvious down side; the red-card for Olivier Giroud late on in the game leaves Arsenal with some serious selection issues for their final four games of the campaign.

Whether you agree with the decision or not the likelihood is that nothing will happen on any potential appeal; especially considering Arsene Wenger’s admission of guilt in the post-match press conference.

Leaving Arsenal with a decision to make in terms of striking options for the remainder of the season.

So who do Arsenal play up top?

The most obvious option for me has to be Lukas Podolski. The German international has been used largely on the flanks since arriving from FC Koln last summer. However there is little doubt that his number one position is through the middle of the park. Usually he plays that position alongside a big-man in order to compliment his own specific talents.

One thing you can never question is his finishing ability. This season he has 14 goals from a largely wide position and his experience in the role certainly gives him the edge.

Then there is Theo Walcott who has finally been giving a chance to showcase his talents as a central option this term.

He performed well as Wenger gave him the opportunity in order to tie down a new contract for the England rebel.

Pushing him up top would give an opportunity for Gervinho or Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to come in and carry on what has been some decent form for them in the past month.

He has also been amongst the goals this season with a career best 18 goals this term; and he would love to get to 20 for the first time.

Then there is of course the other option. They could recall Nicklas Bendtner, Maraoune Chamakh or Park Chu Young from their respective loan deals.

Maybe not!

Who do you think should play up top for Arsenal in Giroud’s absence?

image: © wonker

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