Giroud: Untold’s favourite striker, the bête noire of the anti-Arsenal mobsters, and now…


By Tony Attwood
Olivier Giroud’s record for Arsenal this season is simple to understand.  He has played 16 games and scored 8 goals.  50%.    If we just take league games it is six in 11.  Similar to last season in the league where he scored 15 in 28.
But throughout the summer he was described in fairly negative terms as the little bloggettas (average article length 70 words, average accuracy of their prediction 0.0000001%) decried him, denounced him, and generally said any other words beginning with d that they could think of, which wasn’t many.
To their eternal shame the press joined in.
7 reasons why Arsenal MUST ditch Olivier Giroud during transfer window farted the Metro in May.
The Standard went with Olivier Giroud’s struggles against Liverpool prove he is not good enough to be Arsenal’s first-choice striker on the basis that one game is all it takes to see anyone’s ability, any time any day.

In April the Telegraph ran

Thierry Henry hits out at Olivier Giroud and Mesut Ozil

following from their February story

Olivier Giroud is a flat-track bully

With a goal every 88 minutes, he is scoring more frequently than any other player this season. Since the last international break – during which he scored twice in a 2-1 win over Denmark – Giroud has hit three goals in 200 minutes of Premier League action.

Now, well, err, yes.  I know that.  What surprises me is that they know it too.  They might add that he has scored seven in his last six.  Two for France, five for Arsenal.

He is finding the target with 58 per cent of his shots and scoring with 23 per cent – both of those rates compare favourably with a certain Sergio Aguero. Giroud is also scoring every 42.5 touches of the ball, an incredible rate that highlights his current lethal streak given how much Arsenal tend to dominate possession. They have touched the ball more times than any other team this season – nearly 800 times per game.

But surely, there must be some dig, some negativity, something that says that he has eaten his grandmother and hunted whales in Japan.

The Frenchman works brilliantly in Arsenal’s set-up. There are few strikers around who hold the ball up as well as Giroud, and his link play is crucial to bringing the likes of Ozil, Sanchez and Aaron Ramsey into the game with their runs from midfield.

It is, I must admit, fairly amazing stuff after all that has gone before.  But it goes even further as the writer claims, “Ozil has been Arsenal’s star this season but they also have Giroud to thank.”

They suggest that the movement of Theo to the centre forward spot has pushed Giroud harder.  Both players scored in the cup final, Giroud lost his place to Theo, and now is back fighting.

In fact they make another key point.  Giroud plays well with Ozil.

The two have combined as the best assist-to-goal combination the Premier League has seen this season, with 4 goals.

If we take a look at the best assist-goalscorer combinations in the Premier League this season we see Ozil-Giroud top of the list, and Ozil Sanchez in 3rd spot.  We are, it seems, doing better than anyone else in this category as in every other.

Of course the little bloggettas and their chums always try to find some way to work around figures like this.  A popular one is that Giroud can’t score against the better teams.   That would suggest that Bayern are a crummy team then.  A team against whom he has scored two in two, the second of which was quite utterly stunning.

So, amazingly, the Telegraph is backing off from the old notion that Wenger should sign a striker. What they actually say is, “Wenger was pilloried for failing to sign another striker.”  What they should say is “Wenger was pilloried for failing to sign another striker by us and the copycat sites that follow us.”

It was ever thus.



  • 6 November 1965: Arsenal 6 Sheffield U 2. It was the first win in four and came just three weeks after losing 3-5 to Blackpool.  Baker, Skirton and Armstrong got two goals each.
  • 6 November 1968: Bob McNab played the first of four games for England. He went on to be part of the double side of 1971 and the Fairs Cup winning team of the previous season.


36 Replies to “Giroud: Untold’s favourite striker, the bête noire of the anti-Arsenal mobsters, and now…”

  1. ‘What they actually say is, “Wenger was pilloried for failing to sign another striker.” What they should say is “Wenger was pilloried for failing to sign another striker by us and the copycat sites that follow us.”’
    Whenever a paper or pundit are caught out as having been incredibly wrong about something they always absolve themselves from any responsibility and revert to the ‘it was someone else’ or some other media outlet that said such a silly thing tactic. It was never them.

  2. Giroud is doing great for us. Much matter than some media adored strikers I can think of. We face a striker this weekend the media love to call unstoppable, don’t want to tempt fate, but will be interesting to see how things pan out.
    The only concern with Giroud, like all us human beings, his performance, if not his effort can decline with fatigue, it will be imperative to get theo back and keep him in the picture. But glad we didn’t sign that tool Benzema, not that most of us on here fell for that one anyway.

  3. Off subject, but I have to mention Arthur Shaw. So sad to hear that he had died. He was a great character and I used to enjoy his company along with his daughter Lis watching the 3pm Saturday away games at the local pub a few years back. RIP Arthur

  4. Sorry, off topic, but it seems the suspended President of FIFA has health issues.
    Whoever he is, and whatever he has done, I cannot bring myself to wish health problems on an elderly man, so instead, I will wish him the most minute portion physics can muster of good luck in this transparent attempt to avoid the custodial sentence that is surely coming his way. He is going to need it, I don’t think they FBI , the IRS , the SFO, or now the Swiss anti fraud corruption units and whoever else may be on the chase in this are the most sympathetic of people.

  5. Mandy.

    I too had seen that the septic one was in hospital. His lawyer blabbed to “le Press”.

    One Plank time unit is supposedly the smallest length of time that is meaningful to talk about. It is about 1E-44 seconds.

    This page at Wikipedia talks about some of these really small time units.

  6. Thanks Gord, maybe even these units are too big bro the above mentioned though!
    Guess health issues real , imagined or cynical will put an end to any comeback that some believe he is desperate for. Guess he will just try and put one of his gimps in power if he can get away with it

  7. Rathod,

    Thanks for linking to that story. I know that I keep repeating myself but I absolutely love Arsene Wenger and I am most proud to call him my role model.


    Can you enjoin Walter to write an article on the L’Equipe story? I think Walter’s understanding of the French language and his great insight into the man will make it a great reading for the Untold faithfuls.

  8. Giroud has been an excellent player for us . He did not complain when Theo was picked ahead of him , but when called upon , just came on and did his stuff . Each one has something different to offer and they both are very important cogs in this team .

    Nice link to the Arsene story . A proper translation would be nice . And here’s a quote that would be appropriate here.

    PEACE –
    It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise ,trouble or hard work .
    It means to be the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart .

  9. I was just going through the infographic of 2000 goals scored under Mr Wenger. Giroud is at no 7. Not bad for a shit striker…

  10. BTW, did you guys see MR Wengers modeling shots?? OOooo looks hot doesnt he. OOps got carriewd away. AAAs who think, Mr Wenger cant get to manage any other club if not ARSENAL…. eff off, he could’ve been a successful model…hahaha

  11. For those who want a translation of the Arsêne Wenger interview, here goes.

    Arsêne, if I were to say to you 6945 on the 9th of October, does that ring a bell?
    No, nothing.

    You´ve been Arsenal´s manager for 6945 days. Which is as much as the rest of the other managers in the Premier League, combined.
    Oh, really? So how many seconds is that, since you´re so good at maths? (laughter)

    Easy: 6945x24x3600!
    For me, it represents nothing but the fact I do a job exclusively oriented towards what´s forward. Towards the next day. I´m always living in the future. It´s planned for. Tightly. My relationship with time is quite anxiety-inducing, in fact. I´m always struggling against it. Hence the fact that I ignore entirely what belongs to the past.

    How is the following minute such a source of anxiety?
    I always fear being late. Not being ready. Not being able to accomplish what I have planned. My relationship with time is anxiety-inducing in all respects. Going back through time, leaning backwards is just as vertiginous. First of all it´s scary, because there isn´t as much yet to come as already elapsed… The only way to fight against time is by not looking backwards too much. If one indulges in that, it´s anxiety-inducing and even cause for guilt at times.

    You use the word anxiety-inducing to evoke tomorrow as well as yesterday…
    The only possible moment for happiness is the present. The past creates regrets. And the future, uncertainty. Humans understood that very early, and founded religion. It forgives them their past wrongdoings and tells them not to worry about the future, since they´ll go to Heaven. It means fully taking advantage of the present. Humans self-psychoanalyzed very early through faith.

    Your lucidity regarding the rapport between humanity and religion differs strongly from your teenage view on the subject. Back then, you used to read the missal to help your team win games…
    Alas, nowadays, it doesn´t work as well! At the same time, fortunately, it means my team doesn´t imperatively need God to win.

    When it comes to your relationship with the present, the game, does the manager feel imbued with an almost mystical power? You´re the creator of your team, its style, its strategy.
    Religiously, it is said that God created humans. As for me, I´m just an aide (NOTE: traducing “accompagnateur” unambiguously in this case is next to impossible, because it means simultaneously guide, companion, and escort, and all 3 connotations could apply here). I allow others to express what´s already inside them. I´ve created nothing. I am a facilitator of what´s beautiful in humans. I define myself as an optimist. My neverending battle in this business is to draw out whatever is beautiful in humans. Some would portray me as naïve on that level. At the same time, this allows me to keep the faith and often proves me right.

    Hope that helped. This wasn´t the entire interview, by the way, just what was published online. The rest is only accessible in the printed edition of the magazine that comes out today.

  12. Very true Tony; the amount of ‘stick’ we as a club get and of course Giroud from these outlets is simply mind boggling!

    Bloggettas/Pundits and in general the media, never offer any constructive criticism. IMO they are glorified POT STIRRERS. Terry, of all people, called Savage out on this, now Savage is reeling to justify his knowledge and right to criticize – sighting his (POOR) odd call up and X amount of PL appearances!

    It is bang on obvious (at least to true fans), that we do have a very good squad – one capable of realizing the highest achievements. Deep down I am certain all this lot of bloggettas/pundits/media know this.

    Personally I pay no attention to these fools (paid handsomely to talk shite) – I am more interested in watching one of the best footballing sides perform at their best consistently – should that lead to a trophy or two…well thats my bonus!

    Its a shame that propaganda is so rampant!

  13. AW reminds me of the victim of the school yard bully, a victim who becomes respected by that same bully some years later.

  14. Para, the lives of Tottenham fans revolves only around the loss of arsenal. Their joy is limited. Need to thump them like we did to United. However with so many players out I’d happily take the one nil to the Arsenal ?

  15. I don’t know about Giroud being seventh ( or any other number ) in the list of our best strikers bacause they are all of thier time so comparisons are worthless, but if we are going to play this game then the nearest I would put him to is the great Alan Smith who is probably number three in our best from the last thirty years. If Giroud maintains his progress he might even become that good. I think he could……

  16. Giroud is a decent striker but not top class. He does go on runs of scoring goals but he is also prone to long periods where he doesnt only not score, he becomes completely ineffective. He is a good squad player but we need a striker and it was a mistake not to get one in the summer. Its pretty clear Walcott can not be relied upon even if he was a natural striker.

  17. @Tony
    I never wanted Benzema – hate the guy and was well aware of his previous issues with the police. Just dont think he would be good for the team.

  18. jayramfootball
    So which top class striker was available in the summer who we mistakenly didn’t buy?

  19. @Mick
    I always find that a stupid question.
    It is Wenger’s job to make sure the squad is strong enough. If we continue to stay at the top and challenge for the title then he will have been proven correct in not buying a striker. If Giroud goes off form, which he does regularly, and the goals dry up effecting our league position then it will be Wenger’s fault. No surprise, I think that is exactly what will happen.
    Its really quite simple, the outcome determines the quality of the decision making. For now it’s just my opinion that we should have bought a striker to strengthen the squad and cover Giroud’s inconsistency and Walcott’s regular injuries.

  20. So now Jayaram, hope you’ve read this “”. You could make a good scout. You seem to be ‘good’ at spotting talents required for ARSENAL. WHy dont you help??

  21. And my opinion JamRam remains that it would have been impossible to buy another striker of quality. No striker of quality would have come to Arsenal knowing he was third behind Giroud and Walcott and likely never to get a game. What’s more it would have been observed we have Iwobi and Campbell on the books, and in August no one would have known exactly how good either of them might turn out to be. Which quality player would have come in, in such circumstances, without being guaranteed a place? None, I suspect.

  22. Jayramnetball – you have no idea about class. Giroud is brilliant all round as he also does a fantastic job defending. His goals are exquisite, flicks with either foot, headers & good timing.

    The greatest player of all is Wenger! His foresight is incredible as is his achievement. Creating a club that has unbeatable facilities while winning trophies with a team playing beautiful football. Football that is watched by every lover of the game. Wenger’s Arsenal the most watched team in the world. The team that brings class to EPL despite the corrupt PGMO & idiots who don’t know the Game.

  23. Jayramfootball
    ‘For now it’s just my opinion that we should have bought a striker to strengthen the squad and cover Giroud’s inconsistency and Walcott’s regular injuries.’
    Sorry to keep asking the same stupid question, but who is the top class striker Wenger should have bought in your opinion.
    Just answer the f*****g question, it should be easy enough for someone like you, just refer to your FFM.

  24. You´re welcome, Rathod. As for the Giroud debate (inasmuch as there´s a Giroud debate, because his contributions to the team are honestly obvious), I must say I´m always surprised by the fact Wenger is uniquely slammed for not buying a world-class striker, when it´s widely acknowledged in football circles that there´s a global dearth in that position. There are only a counted few n9 who are unanimously considered ruthless, clinical and above all, not prone to inconstance (and given the media campaign against Arsenal, we should also add not prone to injury. If, for instance, Agüero was a Gunner, can you imagine how mocked Wenger would be for his recurring injuries?), and that´s something that´s been happening for the last few decades or so, because of the way the game´s changed. Arsène is not the reason the best goalscorer in the world champion team is named Thomas Müller, whose role on the field looks nothing like that of a Van Basten in years gone by.

  25. Great article, lovely comments, (from the folk who comprehend), and very special thanks to Goéland.

    If i wasn’t reading “The special one”, I’d jokingly call you the Translator, but you’re clearly the very antithesis of the character known by that name.
    Thank you.

  26. @Mick I already answered the question fully.
    As for speculation, @Tony, that no one would have come in, you can have any opinion you want but doesn’t make it any more valid.
    As I said, the outcome is what matters. The outcomes we have seen for years are that Arsenal get a lot of injuries and the season falls away because of it. I do suspect that will happen again and Wenger not strengthening the squad will prove to be another of his mistakes.

  27. JamRam I fundamentally disagree with you, and your repeating your point doesn’t make it right. I speculated that no one would come in, that is true, but my view is speculation based on an analysis of the situation. Just dismissing what others say doesn’t mean that all opinions are equal.

    Your statement that the outcome is what matters is a viable one, of course, although not one I share (I feel that one should always take into account what happens in the run out to the outcome, but that is a matter of perspective – except that here you say it as a fact. Now this is an opinion – a viable one as I say, but still an opinion.

    Then you say, “The outcomes we have seen for years are that Arsenal get a lot of injuries and the season falls away because of it.” This is simplification, because you don’t take into account how this compares with other clubs. If Arsenal is out on its own with injuries that is a case to be made, but that is simply not true. You say Arsenal fall away because of injuries, but don’t consider other causes of Arsenal doing poorly at certain stages in the season.

    Then you come back to your initial assertion about strengthening the squad, without any reference to the point as to why that is very hard in terms of centre forwards, which is what we started discussing.

    So no, you have not answered any of the questions fully because

    a) Speculation based on an analysis of such evidence as is available, is not opinion, it is theorising and in a society that recognises the validity of the scientific method is considered superior to speculation alone.
    b) You give opinion with no justification as in “the outcome is what matters”
    c) You simplify, because you only look at Arsenal’s situation, without reference to what happens with other clubs
    d) You repeat your own view, without taking any account of reasoned argument against you.

    And you do it again and again.

    Now you might feel that your approach is viable and reasonable. Because I believe in evidence and where evidence is incomplete, I believe in reaching conclusions that are based on such evidence as there is, so that a reasoned argument can follow.

    That is the basis on which this site is based. I don’t ban commentary that takes a contrary view of how one might reach opinions and conclusion but you just come back over and over again with your view that as I point out above is based on an utterly different view of analysis and commentary. We’ve seen this many times over, and nothing is changing. You’ve said nothing that changes my mind, and I’ve obviously not been able to show you what I mean in terms of the difference between opinion based on analysis and opinion not.

    So I think we have had this argument enough, and it is getting tedious. If you really feel you are right, I think it might be better if you go to another site or other sites and discuss there. I’ve read, I’ve taken note, and I don’t see what more we can do.

    This is a site for people who people who enjoy finding evidence and using it – after all what else would you expect on a site that analyses refereeing in the way we do?

    We have read your approach a number of times now. Please accept that this site is based on a different view of knowledge and theory and leave the issue. Continuing the argument is a bit like writing to New Scientist magazine and arguing for the validity of Creationism. The arguments have been rehearsed many times elsewhere, and there’s not much point going through them again.

  28. @Tony, fair enough.
    I retain the view that outcome is what matters because in football as fans we can not know facts around issues like who was available or who would come. Those things are not shared with us, so for me at least, outcomes are the way to measure the effectiveness of any approach as a whole. Thats just the way i look at it.

  29. @Jayramfootball

    Having read through all the comments, I still haven’t found your answer to @Mick’s golden question, “So which top class striker was available in the summer who we mistakenly didn’t buy?”. Without further ado, give a specific reply to the simple question. Mention the striker(s). I reiterate in Mick’s voice (which I am imagining), “Just answer the f*****g question”. Please!

  30. jayramfootball
    Wenger said on numerous occasions that he would add to the squad if players of sufficient quality to improve the squad were available. The fact that he didn’t buy anyone implies that no one who met his criteria was available yet you still persist in constantly criticizing him for not signing anyone.
    The fact is you just like to have a go at Wenger at every opportunity, justified or not.

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