Olivier Giroud was one of the most maligned players to play for Arsenal.
Over the six years he was at the club, however, he won over the majority of the fanbase by being a lot better than he was ever given credit for by a media who branded him a ‘flop’ almost as soon as he arrived.
Even after he left Arsenal for Chelsea, many Arsenal fans held great affection for their former striker, myself included. In fact, after the club ditched him, many of us joked that he was really just on loan, and still an Arsenal player.
Now, however, the 35-year-old has admitted that he was so desperate to leave Chelsea (understandable) that he would have even went to Tottenham, before he eventually came to his senses.
“At that time, I was not getting regular playing time at Chelsea, I was the third-choice striker, so I tried to find a solution with Frank Lampard,” Giroud told reporters.
“I couldn’t remain in that situation. I wanted to leave, but Lampard told me that he needed a replacement.
“He promised me that I would have had more chances and gave me the opportunity to do so, I think I scored eight goals in the final ten games of the season. At that time, Italian clubs were very interested.
“I was so desperate to leave that I even told Lampard that I’d have joined Tottenham because I knew that Jose Mourinho wanted me.
“In the end, I think it would have been difficult because I had played for Arsenal.
“Destiny wanted me to be here, wearing the Rossoneri shirt.”
Giroud scored 105, with 41 assists for Arsenal in 253 games before scoring 39 (14 assists) in 119 for Chelsea.
In Italy with AC Milan, the French striker has scored 14 (with four assists) in 38 games.
Not bad for a player who will be 36 in September. Then again, it’s pace that you lose with age and Giroud never had that to lose in the first place.