Olivier Giroud explains the four reasons he left Arsenal for transfer to Chelsea

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Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud has given four key reasons he ended up leaving Arsenal to seal a deadline day transfer to Stamford Bridge this January.

The France international was a successful player and popular figure at the Emirates Stadium prior to his surprise departure to one of their biggest rivals this winter, and says chats with Blues manager Antonio Conte and France boss Didier Deschamps were key to his decision.

Giroud says that while Deschamps persuaded him to look for first-team football away from Arsenal, hearing of Conte’s interest was a big factor in persuading him to move across London.

The 31-year-old was also keen to carry on playing in the Premier League, whilst fearing that Arsenal’s signing of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, following the summer purchase of Alexandre Lacazette, spelt the end for him with the Gunners.

‘A week before the end of the transfer window, I needed to hear his (Deschamps’) opinion. He didn’t encourage me to join Chelsea. But he encouraged me to change clubs,’ Giroud told Telefoot, as translated by the Daily Mirror.

‘Dortmund were interested but for a loan deal. There was Seville and my agent also received a phone call from Roma. But my choice was quite clear and obvious when I knew that Antonio Conte wanted to work with me.

Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud
Olivier Giroud left Arsenal to sign for Chelsea on transfer deadline day
Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud
Olivier Giroud had been at Arsenal since 2012, scoring 105 goals for the Gunners

‘I had wanted to stay at Arsenal to try my luck even when Alex Lacazette arrived. The reality is that the coach (Arsene Wenger) wanted to recruit another central striker (Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang).

‘When he signed, that made three central strikers and that is why I decided to leave.’

Arsenal fans will no doubt be disappointed to see Giroud leave for Chelsea, but it seems clear Arsene Wenger now has new plans to rebuild an exciting and fresh attack revolving around Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan in north London.

The new duo were in deadly form on Saturday evening as Arsenal thrashed Everton 5-1 in the Premier League.

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