Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud: Transfer reports gave me added motivation

Arsenal star Olivier Giroud admits he was frustrated by remarks that he isn't a world-class striker

By Dipak Patel

Olivier Giroud has revealed that he used transfer speculation as motivation to perform at a higher standard for Arsenal.

The Frenchman has come back strongly following an ankle injury at the beginning of the season, and since his return he has netted seven goals for the club.

Arsene Wenger signed Danny Welbeck during the summer from Manchester United as support for the 28-year-old, but speculation over Arsenal wanting to sign another striker refuses to go away amid reported interest in Porto star Jackson Martinez.

Giroud has been frustrated by remarks that he and Welbeck aren’t world-class strikers, but rather than focusing on the negative aspects, he has tried to use that jibe as a way of improving his performances.

“When people are talking about a player to come and take your place, you take it personally because it’s your position,” Giroud told French newspaper L’Equipe.

“I hear people say, ‘They have Giroud and Welbeck but they need a world class striker.’ Meaning, us, we’re not world-class forwards.

“It spurs you on. Recently, there was a buzz around Jackson Martinez. The coach has said good things about him, the player has said he would like to come.

“I learned that before the Middlesbrough game. It gave me added motivation. I was very happy to score those two goals.”

Giroud signed from Montpellier for £9.6m in 2012 and has scored 50 goals in three seasons for the Gunners.

He was brought in to replace Robin van Persie who departed for Manchester United during the same summer for £24m.

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