Olivier Giroud is closing in on a much-needed return to the Arsenal squad, according to Arsene Wenger, having been out of action since December.

The manager said in his pre-match press conference that “Giroud is one week away” from rejoining the group. The French striker last played for the Gunners in mid-December against West Ham. He picked up a hamstring injury late on in the match and spent the next month recovering.

In the 31-year-old’s absence, Alexandre Lacazette has struggled. The summer signing assisted three goals against Liverpool and Crystal Palace, but he hasn’t scored since early December. No one else has stepped up to the mark either, as players like Danny Welbeck and Theo Walcott had only managed one goal combined.

Plus, now Walcott is with Everton, after completing a permanent transfer this week, so there’s one option gone for Wenger. The team really need Giroud to come back in form to pick up some of the goal-scoring slack. There are still rumours the Frenchman might leave the club though.

In the last 24 hours, French outlet RMC report that Dortmund made contact with Arsenal over the striker. If that’s the case, the Gunners have to make a signing, because none of the current back-up options are dangerous enough.

Players like Welbeck and Alex Iwobi add something to the side, but they don’t score goals reliably. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang would be perfect, if the rumours are true. It’s all set up to be a busy last two weeks of the window.