Olivier Giroud was widely expected to leave Stamford Bridge this summer when his contract expired, while he’s been linked with an exit for a while now.
There was some shock at the end of the season when Chelsea announced they had extended his deal by one more year, and it didn’t really make sense when he wasn’t going to be a regular starter next season.
He’s also in the final years of his career so it would be cruel to keep him as an emergency backup, but it now looks like Chelsea’s plan was to extend his deal to ensure they got some kind of fee for him.
It appears they will bank around €2m as he’s now expected to join AC Milan:
AC Milan have reached an agreement with Chelsea to sign Olivier Giroud, here-we-go soon! €1m as guaranteed fee, €1m as add on. Giroud will sign until June 2023 once all details will be fixed. ?? #ACMilan
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 8, 2021
It was a risky move to extend that deal as there was a chance they would be stuck with an unhappy player on a decent-sized wage, but at least they’ve brought in some money rather than losing him for nothing.
Moving to Milan should be a good move for Giroud as he’ll have Champions League football and fellow veteran Zlatan Ibrahimovic isn’t going to be starting in every game, so there should be a healthy amount of rotation.
It would be a surprise if they start together in attack unless there’s some serious pace from the midfield to get beyond them, but it will be interesting to see how he fares in Serie A.