Arsene Wenger has admitted that he almost dropped Olivier Giroud for our 4-0 win over Hull City, which would have been a massive mistake considering the French forward got our first two goals, as reported by the Daily Star.
Giroud had a son the night before our FA Cup replay, and Wenger claims it crossed his mind to leave his compatriot out of the team altogether. The striker insisted that he wanted to play though, and Wenger granted his wish – being rewarded with a brace from his top scorer.
“Giroud had gone a while without a goal and that will help him tonight,” Wenger said.
“He became [the father] of a young boy last night and that will certainly give him euphoria. [Theo] Walcott scored which is good as well.
“I was tempted [to rest Giroud].
“I think in the end you make a decision and you hope it is the right one.
“I made the decision to play him and he wants to always play and all the other players want to play and that is quite normal.
“People are sometimes surprised that players want to play. Believe me, you don’t play at that level if you don’t want to play.”
Giroud has certainly struggled for goals recently, but so have the entire team. We haven’t enjoyed the best form in 2016, but hopefully that’s about to change. Goals for Giroud and Walcott may well inspire them to go on a run, something we badly need from our forwards.
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The 29-year-old gets a lot of criticism from huge sections of the Arsenal fanbase, and a lot of it is pretty unwarranted. We unquestionably need reinforcements in the striking role, but Giroud does an excellent job of leading the line on his own. There’s a reason he’s our top scorer this season, and why he’s provided us with a consistent return ever since he joined the club.