Chelsea have landed Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud on deadline day as Antonio Conte gets the striker he required in the transfer window.
Chelsea have confirmed the signing of Olivier Giroud from Arsenal and the striker has signed an 18-month deal with the Blues. Chelsea have reportedly paid Arsenal close to £18 million for the Frenchman, as Antonio Conte finally has the striker he needed to compete with Alvaro Morata.
Chelsea had been on a striker hunt ever since the doors to the January transfer window opened. The Blues were linked with some names throughout January, as Antonio Conte was looking for a tall, physical forward to become Chelsea’s focal point in attack, something Morata lacks.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) January 31, 2018
The search in the Premier League from Andy Carroll, Fernando Llorente, Marko Arnautovic and even Peter Crouch’s name was thrown in at some point. Roma’s Edin Dzeko was the player who came closest to signing, but the deal broke down due to complications involving agents.
On the other hand, Michy Batshuayi, Chelsea’s back-up striker was also seeking a way out of the club, as he wanted more playing time ahead of the World Cup, something Conte could not afford him. Chelsea even proposed a swap deal with Tottenham involving Batshuayi and Llorente, which never materialised for many reasons.
Eventually, Batshuayi signed for Borussia Dortmund as a replacement for new Arsenal signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and thus freeing up Chelsea to sign Olivier Giroud from Arsenal. The three deals were directly proportionate with each other, and one hitch anywhere could have seen all three broken down at some point.
Olivier Giroud had plenty of interest in him from clubs across Europe and England. Everton were the ones who came close in the summer to sign the Frenchman and were also keen on a January move. Giroud, since the Arrival of Alexandre Lacazette, has seen his game time reduced at Arsenal.
He decided to stay in the summer and fight for a place. After failing to dislodge Lacazette and forcing his way to Arsenal’s starting eleven, Giroud was reduced to a substitute role but featured heavily in Cup and Europa League games. Giroud has featured in 26 games for Arsenal this season on all competitions, scoring 7 goals.
Giroud wanted more game time at Arsenal, which was not the case, and that, coupled with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s arrival meant the Frenchman was seeking a move ahead of the summer World Cup.
Chelsea first baulked at the £30-35 million price tag Arsenal had set but negotiated their way through to get the deal done at nearly £18 million. His signing could be a great deal for Chelsea if Giroud performs for the rest of the season. Giroud will compete with Alvaro Morata for a striker’s place in the Chelsea squad and is also eligible to play in the Champions League.