Search

Giroud return more important than new signing, insists Wenger

08:05 13 January 2014

Olivier Giroud celebrates his goal against Newcastle. Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Olivier Giroud celebrates his goal against Newcastle. Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

2013 Getty Images

Arsenal manager Arsenal Wenger says Arsenal are scouring the transfer market but insists the return of a rested Olivier Giroud is more important than trying to find a new striker in the notoriously difficult January window.

The Gunners can return to the top of the Premier League tonight with victory at Aston Villa after Chelsea and Manchester City both won at the weekend to leapfrog them at the summit.

Wenger’s strikeforce options have been seriously depleted with main man Giroud missing from the north Londoners’ last two games through an ankle injury and then illness. Understudy Nicklas Bendtner came in but suffered an ankle injury that will keep him out for the rest of the month while Theo Walcott saw his season ended prematurely with a crushing anterior cruciate knee ligament problem.

That leaves German international Lukas Podolski has only recently returned from a length lay-off, while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who has been out since the first day of the season, made a comeback for the under-21s last week.

It means much has been made of Wenger entering the January transfer window, with the likes of £32million-rated Atletico Madrid’s Diego Costa linked to Arsenal – but the manager has urged people not to underestimate the impact that a rested Giroud could have.

“People want always new names, but what is important for us is that Giroud is back,” said Wenger.

“He was a bit tired recently, but now he is refreshed and I am sure he will have a major impact on the second part of the season.”

The Gunners boss compared Giroud’s style to Arsenal legend Alan Smith and added: “When you speak to the coaches after the game they say ‘oh, what a client he is’.

“Giroud has qualities that the rest of the squad has not got, he always gives us that strength.

“We have small players who combine quickly, so to find someone who can hold it, keep the ball, make some room for other players, he does that very well and gives us a very good balance.”

Giroud started the season strongly but his 11th goal, which came in his last outing against Newcastle, was his first strike in eight games and Wenger concedes that it would be “a gamble” to rely on his compatriot for the whole campaign.

“Yes, it is, that is why we are out there,” he said, before insisting that Giroud is make of strong stuff.

“He’s a tough, tough boy, Wenger said, adding: “Even when the medical people say he should rest, he says: ‘I’m alright.’ He needed five stitches after the game at Newcastle.

“He played the whole game at Newcastle with an open ankle [wound] and without complaining - and when I took him off, he didn’t want to come off.

“He is always ready for a fight even when he is tired.”

Related articles

0 comments

Latest Hampstead & Highgate Sports News

Kevin Wimmer:

Tottenham defender Kevin Wimmer is yet to concede a goal in the Premier League since replacing Jan Vertonghen – and he is aiming to keep it that way as he prepares to face Sergio Aguero in Sunday’s title showdown at Manchester City.

09:00
Left to right: Gareth Davies, Max Hanson, Joe Northover, head coach Paul Doyle, Renat Samur, Alex Vonckx, Max Green

Haringey Aquatics teenager Renat Samur recorded a double as the club collected a total of five gold medals at the ASA Middlesex Age Group Championships.

08:30
Back row (left to right): John Beckett, Joe Bruce, Wyn Bliss, George Everitt, Nick Corbett, Joe Beckett. Front row: Joel Robb, Ben Miller, Alfie Buxton

Haringey’s Under-13 indoor cricket side narrowly missed out on qualifying for the finals of the London Youth Games at Harrow Leisure Centre on Saturday.

08:00
Charlie Hodgson kicked three penalties in Saracens' victory over Exeter on Sunday. Pic: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Saracens’ director of rugby Mark McCall is confident his current squad can maintain the club’s momentum at the top of the table, despite the absence of key international stars due to the Six Nations.

05:28
Junior Gunners

Arsenal head up to Manchester United later this month for what is always one of the most eagerly awaited clashes of any season.

Yesterday, 15:49
Matt Botha scored Hampstead & Westminster's goal. Pic: Mark Clews

Hampstead & Westminster’s men returned from the winter break with a 3-1 home defeat against basement boys Canterbury, leaving them one point outside the bottom two in the Premier Division.

Yesterday, 15:41
Left to right: Amir Castronovo, Gabriele Giovannoni, Alexis Lambropoulos, Ella McEver, Marlie Rittenhouse, Julia Murphy and Ally Dill

Eleven-year-old rising star Brandon Biss led the way as Camden Swiss Cottage picked up 68 medals over three weekends of racing in the County Championships.

Yesterday, 15:38
Hendon's man of the match Harry Charles. Pic: Paolo Minoli

Hendon progressed to the quarter-finals of the Middlesex Vase after coming from behind to beat Millfield Old Boys 40-21 in a rollercoaster encounter.

Most read sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Sony Smart Ultra HD 55'' LED TV

Enjoy the ultimate entertainment experience in your living room with the Sony Smart Ultra 55’’ LED TV. Be the envy of all your friends with this huge TV- you can change your living room into your own cinema! Get the boys around to watch the football or get the girls around to watch the DVD of 50 Shades.. this is a prize that everyone would enjoy! Stand a chance to upgrade your current entertainment system by wining this fantastic prize.

Surface Pro 4

Technology is ever evolving. We are constantly being shown new technology that is innovative, revolutionary and designed to make life easier for us all. Gone are the days of dial up modems and computers so large you needed half a room to store it. We are in the age of smooth, small and sleek. Companies are all trying their best to create technology that is easy to transport and guaranteed to be user friendly.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe