Olivier Giroud equalled the Premier League record for most goals from a substitute at a single club at the weekend, but Arsenal fans shouldn’t be surprised.
Giroud has made a bit of a habit popping up with a goal late on with the Gunners, and his latest late equaliser against Southampton was his 17th from the bench with Arsenal.
17 – No player has scored more substitute goals for a single Premier League team than Olivier Giroud – level with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at Man Utd (17). Trademark.
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 10, 2017
However, that was a trait he already had during his time in France. During two seasons with Montpellier, Olivier scored 11 goals in the last 15 minutes of matches, out of his 39 goals in total. That’s over 28% of his goals coming the last fifth of games.
It was a similar story back in his Tours days, when Giroud scored nine goals in the last 15 minutes, a quarter of his 36 in total for the club. Clearly Olivier just has a habit for popping up right at the end.
Perhaps it’s largely as a result of his style of play. The Frenchman is at his best in the air, and teams tend to resort to playing long and crossing when they’re chasing a result late on.
The opposition defences are also more likely to be tired late on, meaning they may struggle against Giroud’s physicality. Whatever the reason for his success, it’s good to have Olivier’s influence in the crucial moments.