Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud has hailed the impact of teammate Joel Campbell, claiming that the Costa Rican is an important player for the Gunners (via Arsenal.com). Campbell, who played most of yesterday’s game on the left wing in place of Alexis Sanchez, scored a smartly-taken goal and was generally lively throughout. It was a much improved performance from the player, who has had his struggles breaking into the first team, but now has an extended run ahead of him and can make a claim for a more permanent spot.
Giroud himself had a mixed game in front of goal. The Frenchman got off to a slow start to the game, and scored an own-goal under pressure just before half time. He improved along with the rest of the team in the second half however, and made amends by scoring into the right goal to put us in the lead. Speaking to Arsenal Player, the striker chose to focus mostly on his teammate, saying, “I’m happy for him because he has the opportunity to show his talent. He’s a top guy who is very generous on the pitch because he never gives up.
“It’s not always been easy for him but I always used to speak with him, encourage him and when he’s playing like that he’s very important for us. Hopefully we’re going to see more of him in that form.”
“[Speaking about the own goal] I was frustrated but now I’m very pleased to score the second goal and help the team win the game. We needed this win and it was not very easy, not everything was perfect, but this win will relieve us.”
Arsenal have now reclaimed the second spot in the league table after both the Manchester teams failed to win their games. It certainly is a great way to start the month, and we will need this momentum going forward as we have big games against Manchester City and Southampton coming up. For the time being however, the focus shifts to Europe as Arsenal look to keep their Champions League hopes alive against Olympiacos on Wednesday.
Giroud will now be facing competition from Theo Walcott for the striking role, but will hope to hold onto his starting spot for at least a little while longer.