Thursday, February 29, 2024

Giroud pushed on by criticism

Olivier Giroud says criticism is normal at a club like Arsenal, and that he’s used it as a motivational factor in his first season at the club.

The Frenchman has scored 17 goals, a not unreasonable return all things considered, but perhaps not quite as good as he thinks.

“I replaced Van Persie and when you arrive at a big club like that, they are very demanding towards you,” he said. “The criticism has not always been deserved, but they push you on.

“Seventeen goals and 11 assists – that is better than Henry and Drogba in their first seasons. This is the quality I have. I have got better with this team and this staff – it is  another level. And I want to continue to improve.”

While his goal tally is certainly fewer than Henry’s 26 in his first Arsenal campaign, perhaps he’s taking into account the assists, and he is right about Drogba. In his first season with Chelsea he scored 16 goals so Giroud is, at this moment in time, one better.

The issue for Arsenal this season isn’t so much Giroud himself, but the fact that we have no alternative to him, so when he’s absent, or misfiring, we’re a bit stuck. However, in terms of goals scored we’re less reliant on one man like last season, but it’s a tricky balance.

The ideal scenario would be for Giroud to use this as a good platform for next season when, all going well, he’ll have some healthy competition from a summer signing.

Giroud will miss Arsenal’s next game against Wigan but will return for what will, hopefully, be a crucial final day encounter with Newcastle at St James Wonga Sports Direct Manboobs Arena.

ARSENAL GOALS 2012-13 (all comps)

Theo Walcott – 20
Olivier Giroud – 17
Lukas Podolski – 14
Santi Cazorla – 12
Gervinho – 7
Mikel Arteta – 6

ARSENAL GOALS 2011-12 (all comps)

Robin van Persie – 36
Theo Walcott – 9
Mikel Arteta – 6
Thomas Vermaelen – 6
Yossi Benayoun – 6
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – 4

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Looking at the stats for 2012-2013 and 2011-2012, even though were missing a goal scorer with the same caliber as the-one-who-should-not-be-named, I find this season’s stats much more healthy: Having the goals spread out on several players is, in my opinion, reflective of a more robust and well-functioning team.

P.S.: The three main signings of Wenger has been rendering 43 goals so far this season. Not that bad after all…


Also look at the list of goal scorers and except for Walcott, none have been at the club for more than 2 season. So it should be a better return from all next year. I think we need to really find someone to start learning from Arteta as he is over 30 and if we cna find someone around 18-19 to learn from him the better we’ll be to make the transition seamless


We have never been closer to the 5th place than this season. Stop looking at stats from all competitions, we scored 7 against Reading, 6 against Coventry FFS! Also 5 against Reading, 7 against Newcastle in the league, so that’s how statistics are for you…

Our attack is anything but healthy, that has been visible on the pitch. Our defense has improved a lot, in fact I really like the look of it, but the attack – it’s shambles.


last time I checked, Reading and Newcastle are still Premier League teams – Henry scored hat tricks against teams like Leicester, Leeds, and Norwich when they were relegation fodder, and it’s not like we simply discount those goals. Obviously players will score more goals against worse teams, but that’s true of everyone (not just Giroud and Walcott). RVP scored 13/22 of his non-penalty league goals against teams in the bottom half this year, including both of his league hat tricks (Villa and Southampton) and his only brace (Wigan). That ratio is 6/11 for Giroud and 7/13 for Walcott – all… Read more »


I think we have Ramsey learning from Arteta. From what it looks like he’ll be his successor


Agree on that and with a little bit more in the engine room too boot


Certainly looks that way. And I love it when we see the way the two communicate on the pitch as well.


Yep. I remember when Mikel was out injured during the winter. Rambo did an excellent job in that role. His stats were comparable to that of Mikel’s.


I think the stats are abit skewed because we have scored so many against minows, not saying high scoring is bad but we have had a alot of crucial draws. Another problem is that as much as I like Giroud, he has probably been given as many goal scoring opportunities as the skunk had last year, and missed a lot of them. The amount of times ive been had my head in my hands after a good opportunity goes away because its fell to his feat and gone to row Z or out for a goal kick. But then hes… Read more »

Bould's Eyeliner

You’re right, he is a lot less clinical than you’d think considering how delicate his assists are. Still, the skunk had seasons upon seasons of being honed as the Wenger braincihild striker. There’s no reason to think that small adjustments can’t happen… hopefully he’ll be better next season, and we can get a glimpse of what’s to come as well as proof of his attitude in the final game.


Francis Coquelin?


Unfortunately, I think the age he is at now, he should be getting games and though he looks like a great player it might just be bad timing on his parents part for letting one slip past the goalie.


Coquelin is about to turn 22 next week, and unfortunately for someone of that age he has really little game time under his belt. I think a loan spell next season would be best (because I don’t want to loose him outright, though if the rumors are true we might) – then we can asses where we are with him.

Teri maa dhi

At the very least it is a good platform for next season… Add another 20 goals via new signing(s) and life should be better

every mans arsenal

Walcott has vastly improved as well. Stepping up from skunks shadow as well (yes this includes popping up in the striker area there when he’s a supposed winger.

We’ve certainly lost out many aerial balls since girouds been out. His hold up play may not be brilliante but when it does come off our attack from then on looks lethal (after his lay-off)

Teri maa dhi

I fully share your opinion- he has improved and had a better return than what many expected of him. He may be not the best positionally defensively but some of the best attacking players in the world are not either they just have teammates picking up their slack. So i’m all for Theo being solely focused on attack and when he adds efficiency to his game and scores plenty goals then many will be for it also. I only remember Henry being responsible defending in his final years when we struggled defensively and needed we more effort as a team.… Read more »

Si in Galway

I had this kinda chat with my mates at the start of the season: this season has been more like the one before last, which to me is more representative of ‘typical’ Arsenal (for a while anyway) insofar as we spread our goals around the team more than more clubs. The season before last we were getting goals from midfield more – in my opinion, we’ve done relatively well out of the defence, ok out of the attack, and not well enough out of midfield. Not to have a go at the Ox or Rambo or Jack per se, but… Read more »


I miss Benny.


Well, at least Arteta has been consistant.

HFB should be proud, but I really hope he can push it to the next level. We as a club need to be aiming at the top, and as a striker he should be yearning to not just be one of the top strikers in the club, but also the league.

That said, he’s done well for a French-man in the Premier League for his first season.


Glad to hear that the criticism is motivating him and not bogging him down!

All things said and done, we definitely need a Striker for the next season to have a back up for Giroud and also perhaps come up with a plan B to add another dimension to our strategy.

Tommy Gunner

I disagree with the ‘as back up for Giroud’ comment I’m afraid. I really want us to just spend 25-odd million on one quality striker, who will relegate Giroud to the bench. You can’t fault Giroud’s effort, and indeed sometimes his effectiveness, but he really is a rather limited player. We need a matchwinner, someone who will have one chance and score, someone to get the 1-0s. A lot of Giroud’s goals have come in our comfortable high-scoring wins, and so his stats are misleading. If we concentrate on getting ‘back up for Giroud’, I fear we will be in… Read more »

Dave Gooner

Couldn’t agree more.

Our “striker” has been benched for a red card and it hasn’t made a blind bit of difference to the team. That is all I need to know.

Giroud will never have the quality or the ability to be Arsenal’s first choice striker. He simply hasn’t the guile or the finesse.


In games that Giroud starts, we have 14 wins, 6 draws, 4 losses (that’s 2 points per game). In games that he doesn’t start, we have 5 wins, 4 draws, 3 losses (1.58 points per game). Looking at games just against the top 5 clubs, he started in 1 win, 1 draw, and 3 losses. Without him we managed 3 draws and 2 losses. So if you wanna take out games against the top 5 (which might skew the results with lots of losses in games he didn’t start), his stats become: 14 wins, 3 draws, 2 losses when he… Read more »


We miss you Giroud!

every mans arsenal

Gervais for CF!!!!

boundary conditions

Giroud likes it the hard way! None of this shit.


stop these comparisons mate and work on areas of improvement.Unlike henry in his first season, age is not on your side and there are fewer better players than then around you to make you look better.Cant fault the effort though.


Better players around him now than then? Bergkamp? Pires? Ljungberg? Vieria? Hmmm


You need to read that comment again Billy

nii amartey

camparison can be very tricky but i think his stats is more suited to Drogba as both of them started their professional careers a bit late….


I wouldn’t pay too much attention to cup competitions. I’d look at only the league as in the cup, you can get lower league teams, and Montpelliers as well. In the league, Giroud scored 11 goals in about 34 games, as the focal point of the attack. Most of his goals were against relegation fodder, in high-scoring games. How dare he compare himself to Thierry Henry and Didier Drogba? How dare he think that just because they didn’t score 40 goals in their first seasons, he is anything similar to them? Nicklas Bendtner also didn’t score 40 goals in his… Read more »


In a way I think you’re right. Many of his goals have come against weaker oppositions.

Still think Bendtner, at some point at least, really looked like becoming something really interesting for the future and for Arsenal. Had it not been for is mental ego maybe he could’ve made it with us…

Mongolian Gooner

To be fair to him, he gets constantly compared to van Cunt and Henry and even Drogba (late-bloomer coming from French league with physical style of play). Yes, I don’t see him in the same class, but he isn’t shit or anything. He does have his qualities, even if they aren’t as many as with the aforementioned players. He should try to excel at what he’s good at and with some hard work he’ll be able to make his name at Arsenal too.

Jack's Right Foot

I forgot Benayoun scored 6 goals for us. Really enjoyed watching him play when he was here, what an unexpected loan signing.

every mans arsenal

Yeah and now he’s being slaughtered by chelsea fans for coming to us on loan. The same fans who tell us to forget about skunk – that we stop booing him. Hypocrites!!!


HFB clearly not good enough for us,you can’t compare him with Drogba.He gave defenders nightmares,HFB gives wet dreams!


Only because of his looks ,On the field however he is a handful for defenders and will be more so next year. He needs to be more clinical that’s it .. Adebayor had raw talent but Gervinoesqe finishing (sometimes worse) when he came .. in 2007 he bagged 24 Premiership goals .. Giroud could do that as well in a not to distant future. We should however bring in somebody more clinical Now to compete with Giroud for starting berth.


Congratulations lettragad you got my double inyourendo,ps you are comparing him with a lazy cunt of a player and he still comes of worst.

Gibbs' Ears

Surprised to hear in the same interview that Bayern wanted him before changing their target to Mandzukic. If they were serious about him I doubt we could have competed so it’s fortunate we managed to snag HFB. He certainly could improve, so it’s good to see him responding well to criticism.

Mongolian Gooner

No I think the deciding factor was the chance to work under Arsene Wenger. The HFB is a late-starter compared to others and he is still very much in his developmental phase, so a move that allowed him to learn under Wenger was probably the most sensible decision. Also, Wenger being French and having Koscielny there too must have swayed him.

Gibbs' Ears

Good point and he has mentioned how much he looked up to Henry as a player. Not sure why people are angry about him sounding confident now when earlier this season Giroud was criticised for lacking confidence. Strikers need to believe they are great, all the best ones tend to have that aura of invincibility about them.

every mans arsenal

yes just like bendtner. He’s so invincible he can’t be see in the starting xi for juve.


He’s got to stop comparing himself to Henry, van Persie and Drogba. Henry and van Persie had age on their side. Drogba played till he was 34. 8 years from now, I think 30 will be considered too old, let alone 34.
He may want to be as good as Henry and may achieve that, but he has very little time to do it! He was good, but I hope he becomes much more clinical and develops composure in front of goal.

P.S. I apologize for mentioning van Persie’s name alongside Henry’s!!

Red Cannon

Er…Drogba’s still playing. He just won another championship with Galasataray.


I know that! I mean, after Chelsea, he went to China and tried to finish off there but things turned out different for him.


Astonishing! No one else apart from the skunk got into double figures. A welcome development thus far. Onwards and forward!

Wenger's Glasses

Well he scored againts Bayern, if I’m not mistaken, that’s not a small team is it? & as a matter of fact have we forgotten how Arsenal played againts “small teams” this season? It’s 50% winning chance everytime.

Give the guy some slack, that’s all I’m sayin’.


Let’s not forget the equalizer against Liverpool.

Lord theo

The only problem i have with giroud is that he scores against weak teams in high scoring games,however if u look theo he is not our striker but at least he has scored against man u,chelsea and everton which giroud failed 2 do and he also scored against liverpool and spurs.he needs 2 score when the going gets tough just like theo.


Do you mean text speak?

Mongolian Gooner

Giroud has been a good signing and hopefully he will push on next season. He can become a great player for us. But first of all, he should compare himself to others and going public with comments like that isn’t helpful. Just keep your head down and work on your game. He’s got a lot of things to improve yet, and looking at the statistics can be misleading. Yes he got us 17 goals, but he still hasn’t really forged a reliable teamplay style yet. There are glimpses, like his one-touch looped passes, or his layoffs, but all that can… Read more »

Mongolian Gooner

*shouldn’t compare himself

Arsenic FC

Goals against Utd, City and Chelsea?…..None. Henry and Drogba scored when it really mattered.


Goals against Sp*rs, Liverpooll, Schalke, Bayern … Yes … May not be as many as you want, but he does score and assist in the big games … First season as well


“The issue for Arsenal this season isn’t so much Giroud himself, but the fact that we have no alternative to him, so when he’s absent, or misfiring, we’re a bit stuck.” Exactly. Giroud gets a lot of stick from Arsenal fans, especially on other websites, but I actually like him. He’s a decent second striker who is worth a place in any top-four squad. But he’s no Henry or Van Persie, and never will be. His big problem is his chronic lack of pace. At the highest levels if you don’t have that devastating speed off the mark then you… Read more »

A N Other

Exactly.. That’s why we need player like Benteke who can share the work load with Giroud.

Red Cannon

4-4-2 is clearly the way to get the best out of Giroud. It would probably help get more out of Podolski & Theo as 2nd strikers, too. It would, of course, leave the boss with a difficult question of what to do with the midfield, but it amazes me that he’s never even tried it this season.

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Walcott has been criticised all season yet has scored the most goals. Giroud and Podolski are new with the latter being hampered by an injury. Its strange but with our so called pop gun attack we look like finishing very close to last years team. Go figure ? Over the last nine summers Arsenal like every other club talked about making three or four significant signings which would bring back the glory days. Last summer Giroud, Podolski and Santi were ushered in as the new dawn which would see the Premier league return and for the first time the Champions… Read more »

Red Cannon

The important part of this summer will be the lack of significant leavings.


Yes because we only have mediocre battlers left , all the quality has been hocked off.

William Gooner

Theo, Giroud and Podoslki did well, (better than Rooney, Chicharito, Welbeck, or David Villa, Alexis Sanchez, and Pedro) and pretty much all other teams scorers, but yes we’re still short in that department, (like now without Giroud’s). There are 14 goals missing on your 2012-2013 list, (Koscielny’s equalizer against Man City, Mertesacker’s header against Spurs,…) the total tally this year is 100 so far.

Bacary's right leg

Not being funny. But I’m sure drogba’s league goal tally was never really that special.. He only got over 20 goals in the prem once and got to 20 twice? correct me if I’m wrong twice and in his first two seasons he looked awful.. I think he got 10 and 13 in the prem.. so there is still hope for him if Drogba could do it.

Bacary's right leg

sorry he got to and over 20 twice*

Arty's Art


boundary conditions

We love Princess Diana and David Beckham too! WE DO!

every mans arsenal

It has always been expected of a player on his first season to perform rather poorly . But giroud has clearly had a better 1st season than most. The media are not too happy about that thus the b/s on him not being good enough. The media don’t like to be surprised you know. Now wait for next season!


I’ve been rather impressed with Giroud.

My only issue, and not his fault, he just needs a rest from time to time. Some games he looks leggy but when you’re playing every 3 days that’s going to happen!


It’s funny, we’re very quick to criticise footballers for being leggy, but no one ever holds that against attractive ladies.


Also, and a bit off-topic, what’s the prefered result from tomorrow night’s game? It’s obviously going to massively affect what happens in the top 4 at the end of the season.

I think a Chelsea win would probably serve us best as it would mean that Spurs are almost out of contention.

Or would a draw be best for us? Hmm… Obviously both teams losing and picking up injuries would be the bestest bestest.


Chelsea win…that way 4 pts will secure 4th because Sp*ds aren’t going to beat Stoke 12-0

The Ox, The Ram, Willy and Wally

I a draw would be nice. That would mean we might still be able to get 3rd, if Chelsea then drop points to Villa or Everton, which isn’t out of the question. And anyway, our next two games are must wins.

I do have a bad feeling about tonight though, I can see Tottenham getting a win…

Also, goodbye to Old Red Nose, and good riddance. I hope it’s Fergie time and not just United time.


gervinhos head is startin to look like the neck of tevez

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