'For us it was either Ba or Giroud' - What has changed at Arsenal?

Giroud V Stoke

Arsene Wenger admitted last summer he snubbed Demba Ba because of Olivier Giroud. Having approached Chelsea for his services nine months on, we ask what has changed?

Arsenal were linked with Demba Ba last summer and in January, and Arsene Wenger admitted in early 2013 he did consider the striker.

He told Arsenal's official website that because of the striker's style he did not feel the Senegalese international was right for the club.

Nothing personal, just the fact he was too similar to what they already have.

"I like Demba Ba personally, he is a similar type to Giroud who we just bought. It was one or the other one."

Fast forward to summer transfer deadline day 2013, and it is being claimed by Sky Sports News that Arsenal have made an approach for the striker.

So what has changed to bring Arsene Wenger to the table?

Firstly the transfer market conditions. Arsenal have more wage space, and could afford both he and Giroud.

Secondly the Gunners would not actually have to pay a transfer fee for Ba, making him a low-risk acquisition. Their enquiry to Chelsea is that of a loan one.

Thirdly, Arsenal are getting desperate to add a striker - having missed out so far this summer on top targets Luis Suarez and Gonzalo Higuain, apparently no closer to adding a frontman, a need accelerated by the injury to Lukas Podolski. Indeed Demba Ba at this late stage appears to be their only hope.

Finally, and the most intriguing one of the lot, Arsenal's enquiry for Ba could owe to Giroud's success.

Back in January the jury was still out on the Frenchman, but since then the striker has hit form, enjoying a storming start to this Premier League season netting in every game.

Arsenal's side is set up around Giroud as a focal figure in attack, but at some stage he will need a break. Adding a similar striker in Ba will allow Arsenal to replicate such success without changing their style as they would have done with Suarez.

There can never be too much of a good thing, and it is that hope which is bringing Wenger back to the negotiating table for the Chelsea striker.

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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