Olivier Giroud’s transfer to Chelsea is starting to look like a smart move, after Antonio Conte admitted he doesn’t know when Alvaro Morata might return from injury.
When Giroud first completed his move to Chelsea, many fans questioned his choice of club.
He left Arsenal, where he was second choice, to join another club where he would be second choice. Summer signing Alvaro Morata would surely remain the starting striker.
It would’ve made much more sense had Giroud went to Borussia Dortmund to be a guaranteed starter instead.
On Friday, though, Antonio Conte told his pre-match press conference that Morata could be out long-term, which would change things considerably.
“Players like Morata, for us, are very important, and have been missing for a long period of time,” he explained. “I don’t know how long he will be out.
“We are struggling a lot to find a solution to solve the pain in his back. If you ask me whether he needs a day, a month or the rest of the season, I don’t know. For this reason, I’m a bit worried.”
If Morata is out for a month or more, with Michy Bashuayi on loan at Dortmund, Chelsea won’t have many options. Suddenly it looks like Giroud could be the first choice striker at the club after all.
One thing’s for sure, the Frenchman will certainly be pushing for starts whenever possible.
The World Cup is only months away now, and Giroud won’t want to sit on the bench between now and then.
Firstly, it could damage his chances of staying in Didier Deschamps’ plans.
Secondly, it’d be very easy for the striker to lose his edge if he’s not playing.
Fortunately for him, it doesn’t look like that will be a problem, for now at least.
Arsenal, meanwhile, could have done with him from the bench at Wembley on Saturday…