Giroud vs Arsenal- A debate which has been going on over a month since the Frenchman’s remarkable return to the starting line-up.
He has justified his inclusion amazingly- scoring in almost each of the games he has played recently. Moreover, his goals per-minute ratio is best in league among players, who have scored more than once this season.
Giroud undeniably has good vision in his overall game, which is justified by some of the assists he has provided to his team mates.
His recent ‘scorpion’ kick, arguably the goal of the season, made a strong statement among his critics.
Yet, he seems to divide opinion among even the most loyal of Arsenal supporters. Some of his performances border on line of mediocrity and results in frustration for all watching.
The Frenchman is someone who can go from the most favoured player to the least favoured in a matter of games.
Consistency and scoring in crucial games is something the French striker has been questioned for long. Furthermore, after a ‘purple patch’ he has the habit of not scoring for a long stretch of games and has been equally guilty of missing easy chances in many of the games he starts.
On the other hand, Alexis Sanchez- a machine who never stops running and does not feel content even after scoring goals after goals for his team. His passion and determination is unrivalled.
When he starts up front instead of Giroud, he provides the gunners with a different dimension and option to work with.
His pace, pressing and movement causes opposition defenders to come out of position to deal with him- in turn creating space for the likes of Ozil and Walcott to capitalize on. Part of Ozil’s mini scoring run was as a result of that.
However, sometimes when the Gunners are pressed and pressurized, Sanchez and Arsenal are seemingly ‘found out’.
For all his talents, Sanchez is not able to hold the ball upfront like Giroud during such situations which leaves the Londoners in trouble at times facing constant pressure. At the same time, Arsenal’s midfield lacks a player who can battle ‘hard’ in such a situation to help Sanchez out.
Whilst the Copa America hero does seem to fit in with Arsenal’s fast-paced style, helping to create gaps in-between opposition defences by using his pace and movement, the jury remains divided.
He is currently the joint top scorer in the league with 15 goals along almost alongside Costa and looks a fair bet to win the golden boot this season. Experts have suggested Wenger only decides on who start upfront based on the opposition his team is going to be face – which seems a fair argument to say the least for even the most adamant of the ‘Wenger out’ parade.
But for now, it seems the longtime French manager will reward Giroud for his recent performances. However, it remains to be seen whether Wenger’s decision is going to be a correct one in the long term.
For it doesn’t matter to the Chilean where he plays as long as he plays, but for Arsenal this decision might have huge repercussions in the overall picture. Only time will tell.