On this day: Giroud defends his Arsenal position, McDermott's uncertainty at Leeds

News stories involving Arsenal, Manchester United and Leeds United all feature.

Most teams have now played their final league games of 2014, with the focus on the New Years Day fixtures and getting off to a great start over January in 2015.

The start of the next transfer window is also extremely close and it will be interesting to see how sides in the Premier League and Championship go about improving their squads this winter.

We’ve taken a look back at this day last year to see which stories had fans talking.

‘Giroud: Arsenal don’t need another striker’

Arsenal forward Olivier Giroud defended himself, suggesting that the Gunners didn’t need to sign another centre forward.

Giroud was often criticised last season, with manager Arsene Wenger under pressure to make additional signings during the January transfer window.

“If the coach wants me to rest, he can do it without buying a new striker. Lukas Podolski is having a good comeback. Theo Walcott can play as a striker. We have the quality and the quantity,” Giroud told Canal+.

‘McDermott admits to uncertainty’

Former Leeds United manager Brian McDermott admitted that he didn’t know whether Max Gradel would return to the club.

McDermott said it would be difficult for Leeds to go after the Elland Road favourite because two years had passed since he pulled on the white shirt.

“He was very good here but that was over two years ago and you can't sign someone because they were a favourite before - Any deal for him would need to be right for now because it wouldn't be a cheap one,” said McDermott.

‘United linked with £50m Barkley move’

The Mirror reported that Manchester United were considering a £50 million move for Everton star Ross Barkley.

Barkley is rated as one of the best midfield prospects in England and United had the advantage of David Moyes’ links with his old club.

Reports suggested that it would have taken a fee within that region for the Toffees to even consider a deal.

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