France legend unimpressed with Giroud, mocks Nasri

Arsenal and Manchester City stars still have plenty of work to do on their games, according to Jean-Pierre Papin.

21 years ago Jean-Pierre Papin was voted European Footballer of the Year, so it's fair to say he has earned the right to have his say about football's top talents.

The once most expensive player in the world at £10 million, Papin is a Marseille legend, playing under Fabio Capello at AC Milan in a spell ruined by injuries.

He was quizzed by Le Parisien after France's 4-2 win over Belarus in World Cup qualifying over the performances of two Premier League stars, Samir Nasri and Olivier Giroud.

Nasri came off the bench to score in the match, while Giroud was unable to find the net, with the other three goals coming from Franck Ribery (2) and Paul Pogba.

Papin said of Nasri: "When Samir plays like that, he is one of the best players we have. The problem is that it happens once every six months."

With regard to Olivier Giroud, Papin feels France have a problem. up front Karim Benzema has not produced anywhere near his best Real Madrid form for Les Bleus, leading to him being dropped for Giroud, but feels the Arsenal star did not seize his chance either.

"If you look at the game Giroud, he did no better than Benzema, so on that side it is clear that there we have still not found the solution."

Nasri will be the one who can take more from Papin's comments, his urge for consistency is something the Manchester City man will be aware of, and a big challenge for the former Gunner.

Giroud will be the more frustrated of the two. He has been in sensational form for Arsenal, and many will have had money on him reproducing that goalscoring touch against Belarus.

The important issue on the night as Papin went onto say, was that France got the win and qualified.

Nasri will hope in the dead-rubbers to come he will get his chance to show he can be effective for his country in more than a cameo off the bench. Giroud meanwhile will simply be hoping he is first in line, and he has not re-handed Benzema the initiative.

image: © wonker

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