For most of the season Olivier Giroud has held that central attacking slot, while Lukas Podolski and Theo Walcott have been left to argue like a pair of kids over who should step up when the Frenchman isn’t available.
Well Arsenal could be left with a very big problem next season because Giroud has dropped a massive ‘come and get me’ style plea to PSG suggesting any move to the French giants is a ‘very attractive’ proposition.
PSG have not made any secret of the fact they are looking to try and increase the number of French players in their squad, to try and mimic the success which has been achieved by the big clubs in Germany.
It’s an understandable point considering the main criticism of what they are trying to achieve in Paris, is that they are going for silverware without any attempt to retain the identity of the football club.
Arsenal need to be very careful because Giroud is a more important player to them than many will think or appreciate.
He may not have had a massive impact this season, after signing from Montpellier, with just 11 goals in 33 Premier League games but he is arguably the most important forward at the club.
All of the talk has been about the possibility of Lukas Podolski leaving the Gunners and whether they can change his role in the team or whether they should get as much as they can for the German and move him on.
That is focus and attention which would have been better split between that situation and ensuring that Giroud never has any reason or desire to leave the North London club.
Now he’s got a season of English football under his belt, he should be ready to have a much bigger impact for the club next season.
It will be difficult because he’s more of a target for Arsenal’s rivals due to his relative success, but he adds a vital physical threat to the Arsenal frontline which they simply don’t possess when he’s not in the team.
They could easily milk PSG for a massive transfer fee but that would be extremely counter productive for the club, when Arsene Wenger should be looking to make quality additions to the squad, not let more key players leave.
If Arsenal allow Giroud to slip off to PSG this summer, then it’s a transfer that could have a very devastating effect for the club, especially if they don’t sign a replacement with the same core skills and qualities.
Any chance of this happening?
image: © ronnie macdonald