Giroud still ‘hugely effective’ for Arsenal

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Former Everton defender Andy Hinchcliffe believes Olivier Giroud could still have an important role to play at Arsenal.

Everton were keen to sign the French striker, 31, during the summer transfer window and have been tipped to try again in January.

But Hinchcliffe, who spent eight years at Goodison Park, believes Giroud has a lot to offer Gunners boss Arsene Wenger.

Speaking on Sky Sports News, Hinchcliffe said: “The decision will probably be his. It’ll be up to Giroud. If he’d wanted to go to Everton he probably could have. That might still arise.

“It’s just if Giroud wants to play regular football. It’s whether he says to Wenger ‘I want to be out there playing, because I’m not playing enough.”

“Because he’s such a different type of centre-forward, maybe for Wenger’s he’s someone you really want to keep for when teams sit behind you and you have to knock the ball into the box and you’d rather have Giroud in the box than Lacazette. A manager always wants that ability to change things.

“He’s a physical centre-forward and they might need him. Arsenal with Lacazette, Ozil and Sanchez, it’s all about pace and mobility and movement, whereas with Giroud that’s not really his game but if you play to his strengths he can be hugely effective.”

Former West Ham striker Tony Cottee, who played for Everton as well, also believes Giroud still has plenty to offer Arsenal.

Cottee said: “He’s scored over a hundred goals for the club and has done it very quietly – he gets on with his work.

“He could have left. I think he could quite possibly have gone to Everton. He didn’t, he stayed at the club.

“He’s had injury problems year but he’s an integral part of the squad. They need to keep him fit, keep him involved and keep him happy.”

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