Rio Ferdinand says that Olivier Giroud should be angry at his teammates for not putting crosses into the box, after Arsenal drew a blank against West Ham.
Giroud usually thrives off balls into the box, but against the Hammers he didn’t even manage a single shot on target.
Ferdinand told BT Sport that he thought the blame lay with the rest of the team for not providing the French striker with opportunities.
“If I’m Giroud I’m going into the dressing room and throwing people about and going crazy,” he said. “I’m six-foot-three or whatever it is. I’m a man mountain.
“I thrive off balls into the box. Put the ball in the box. How many times did they get wide in the box and didn’t put the ball in the box?
“He’s standing out there with his arms out saying ‘what am I here for?’ He needs to feed off crosses. They didn’t put enough in for him today.”
It’s nice of the former Manchester United man to give Arsenal’s 31-year-old striker an excuse, but what he’s arguing is just not true.
In total, Arsenal put 23 crosses into the box against West Ham, that’s more than one every four minutes. Maitland-Niles attempted the most, with nine, and four of those connected with their intended targets. None resulted in a goal.
So, the problem wasn’t that the Gunners didn’t put the ball in the area more, it was that none of their attempts were converted. Of course, not all of them were aimed at Giroud, but he still didn’t manage to put one on target when a chance came his way.
That’s not to say all the blame should be put on the Frenchman. He was well-marked, which is why so many of the crosses didn’t lead to anything.
West Ham were ready for 90 minutes of passing around the edge of the area and then crossing to Giroud in a packed box, and that’s what Arsenal gave them.