The agent of Chelsea star, Michael Manuello, Olivier Giroud has given an in-depth account of the striker’s current situation in a detailed interview with Foot Mercato.
Manuello admits that the 34-year-old’s lack of playing time and spot behind academy graduate Tammy Abraham isn’t ‘necessarily fair’ given the Frenchman’s contributions last term.
Giroud lost the starting berth to Abraham last season, with his lesser role resulting in 10 goals and one assist in 25 appearances across all competitions.
Of that tally, eight goals and the assist came during the restart, with Giroud hitting the back of the net seven times in the Blues’ last nine Premier League games.
Giroud also helped the west London outfit book their place in the FA Cup final with a goal against Manchester United, and notched the assist for Christian Pulisic’s goal in the defeat to rivals Arsenal.
Giroud’s representative reiterated just how strongly the target-man closed out last season:
“Over the last six months, Olivier has chained more than sixteen matches, if we take all the playing time confused just at Chelsea.”
“He broke a record that no one has talked about because no 33-year-old has finished like he did.”
“Indeed, since the beginning of September, things have evolved but that has not called into question his ability to play matches for the France team as has been said by some.”
“At the same time, it is also said that Chelsea made a great debut. I hear it. But with Olivier Giroud and without the recruits, Chelsea were 18 points taken in 9 matches.”
“These 18 points were taken when Olivier held (scored) seven times.”
Manuello also suggested that if Giroud’s lack of playing time continues an exit will be discussed:
“Over the past 5 years, there are about fifteen teams that have been able to score the same number of points. So it was a very good end to the season and a very good start for Chelsea, but it is nothing special. But in the meantime, there are still 150 million euros of players who have been bought.”
“It’s not the same to play with Ziyech, Havertz, Werner or without them. So I put it into perspective anyway.”
“But we must not be blind and Frank Lampard has decided to put Tammy Abraham before him. It’s not necessarily fair compared to what Olivier had done at the end of the season.”
“But he has the right, it is his choice. So indeed, if it continues in this direction, then yes in December we will meet again as in December 2019.”
“Things have happened in the past five months. We cannot go back only to the last two months and have amnesia on the three before.”
“But we have to be honest and it’s true that if this continues, he will have to experience other emotions first of all.”
Giroud’s only started one of his six appearances for the Blues so far this season, with the centre-forward’s only goal at club level coming against Barnsley in the Carabao Cup.
Despite the star’s bit-part role under Frank Lampard, Giroud remains a key player for France, with five goals and an assist since in his eight caps since international football returned in September.
Giroud’s incredibly unlucky to have found himself in this situation, the Blues have transformed their side this summer, adding younger talents to the team – leaving a minimal role for Giroud.
In the short-term, Giroud may see a little more action as a rotation option now that Timo Werner is being fielded on the wing with Christian Pulisic injured, leaving Abraham to take the No.9 position.