Ex-Liverpool star says Arsenal's Giroud is a 'scapegoat', singles out impressive performer

Danny Murphy believes Olivier Giroud was unfairly maligned for his performance against Monaco.

Former Liverpool midfielder Danny Murphy says he believes Olivier Giroud was unfairly singled out for criticism in midweek against Monaco.

Giroud's performance was widely panned, with French newspaper L'Equipe giving his display a rating of 2/10.

He was back in the side against Everton at the weekend, and repaid manager Arsene Wenger's faith by scoring the opening goal in the 2-0 win.

Murphy told BBC Match of the Day 2: "He was made a scapegoat, for the nature of the loss, and the competition it was in.

"He showed great character. He should thank his boss. As a striker your desperate to get a goal again."

It was however Arsene Wenger who drew the most attention to Giroud's woeful efforts against Monaco, substituting him after an hour despite not having an established centre-forward on the bench.

Giroud had recorded none of his six efforts on goal in the match - but as Murphy points out, he was not responsible for the poor defending on show.

Against Everton there was not a huge improvement, but he made it count. He had six shots, with one on target, which he scored from.

  MatchTotal ShotsShots On TargetGoalsMins Played
Olivier Giroud Arsenal vs Monaco 6 0 0 60
Olivier Giroud Arsenal vs Everton 6 1 1 90

Murphy praises Ospina

Danny Murphy had extra praise for goalkeeper David Ospina, who has emerged as number one in recent weeks ahead of Wojciech Szczesny.

He commended his bravery in his performance against Everton, describing it as what the defence needed, adding: "Ospina has been really impressive. He got better as the game went on."

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