Olivier Giroud says he had no choice but to leave Arsenal after Arsene Wenger decided to bring in Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in the winter window.
Currently on international duty, Giroud spoke to the French media about his January transfer. He explained that the decision was almost entirely based around his game-time, and in the end it was obvious which path he had to take.
“It is certain that for me, the choice was clear, I had to leave Arsenal,” he said (via Tribal Football).
“From the moment when the transfer window opened, the coach had decided to take a new attacker, he paid a certain price. It was obvious that I had to leave. You’re not on top when you play less and see your teammates on the field. I could not be satisfied with this role, even more with the signing of a new attacker.”
As Giroud implies, the situation was already difficult even before Aubameyang joined. The striker only made one Premier League start in half a season for Arsenal. What’s more, the player in front of him was one of his national team rivals, Alexandre Lacazette.
That wasn’t so bad when the club had the FA Cup, the League Cup and the Europa League. It would’ve been a big problem now though, with only one of those competitions remaining.
Then add on top of that yet another striker, who is even more likely to take the first-choice spot.Suddenly Giroud was facing a big fight just to get those limited Europa League starts.
You can understand why that made him want to leave, especially with the World Cup this summer. In the end it’s difficult to have any hard feelings about the move, even if it was to a rival.