Many expected Lukas Podolski to be an Arsenal man since the January window speculation, but not many Gooners envisaged another top class forward heading to the Emirates this summer.
But rumours have heated up over the past month that Giroud had become a top target of Wenger’s, but like many before him, it seemed the speculation would be merely that, until talks seemed to progress last week.
Arsenal’s official website has finally announced the former Montpellier striker is now a Gunner, on a long term deal that will see the 25 year old link up with Arsene Wenger’s side for preseason after July 1st.
Arsene Wenger said:
We are delighted to have secured the signing of Olivier Giroud. He has a very good physical presence and is exceptional in the air, with a great work ethic. We are excited about Olivier joining us and he will add an additional dimension to our attacking options next season.
He has proved that he is capable of performing at the top level with club and country, and we saw what a big influence he was in Montpellier’s championship-winning side last season. We all look forward to Olivier joining us and seeing him play in an Arsenal shirt.
Giroud, who denied a deal had been struck last week while on duty with the French international side, said of his move to North London:
I am delighted to be here at Arsenal and to be part of one of the great teams in English football. It’s a huge satisfaction to join this great club and it’s been a dream since I was young to play in the Premier League.
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I was attracted by the philosophy of football and Arsène Wenger’s ‘touch’ at this club. I have always admired Arsenal with its great history and reputation, and I now hope to achieve great things here. I’m very proud to be a Gunner and I will give my best for all the Arsenal fans.
Personally I am very excited over the signing as he is a proven talent that was monitored by most of Europe’s top clubs. He netted an impressive 21 goals in Montpellier’s Ligue 1 title winning campaign, and was named in the French league’s Team of the Year.
Also the acquisition of the French hit man is a big step in Arsenal’s slightly altering philosophy. Over the years they have failed to bring in established star talents, with the club mainly focusing on nurturing young talent.
A combination of the two is what Gooners have been calling for, and it certainly seems that times are changing. With both Podolski and Giroud now in red and white, next season feels like it will be one to look forward to, but there is still one question that remains – are these purchases enough to retain captain and talisman Robin van Persie?
The Dutchman surely will be happy to see the Gunners purchase some top class talent, but will the duo inspire Van Persie to stay or provide a good excuse to leave?
Are you happy to see Giroud become a Gooner? Feel free to comment below or in Giroud’s thread in the allArsenal forum.