Antonio Conte told Chelsea FC signing can replace Oliver Giroud
Blues legend William Gallas believes Olivier Giroud can lead the line for Chelsea instead of Alvaro Morata
William Gallas believes Chelsea FC signing Olivier Giroud can replace Alvaro Morata in Antonio Conte’s starting line-up.
The France international completed a £21m move to Chelsea FC from north London side Arsenal on transfer deadline day in January.
Giroud was signed to add more attacking depth to Conte’s squad ahead of the second half of the 2017-18 season.
However, the 31-year-old has found his first-team opportunities limited given the Chelsea FC manager’s tendency to use Eden Hazard in a solo role.
The experienced French striker scored his first Blues goal in a 4-0 win over Hull City in the FA Cup fourth round at Stamford Bridge.
Giroud has only racked up 111 minutes of Premier League football since his deadline day switch to Chelsea FC back in January.
Former Chelsea FC defender Gallas believes Giroud merits a chance to shine in Antonio Conte’s team ahead of Morata.
“He can be [Morata’s replacement]. He has shown in the past that he can do it with Arsenal,” Gallas told the London Evening Standard.
“He was struggling a little bit at Arsenal when he was on the bench. But when Arsene Wenger put him on the pitch, he showed everybody he can do the job.
“With Chelsea I think he will do the same thing. Everyone knows at Chelsea that the first choice will be Alvaro Morata but you have to play well to keep your position to be the first choice.
“If you don’t play well, you know behind you, you have a striker [Giroud]. If he has his chance to play, maybe he will take it. That’s why I like it. That lifts the level of the training and that then lifts the performance of the players.
“You need to have competition between the players because you have to play in many competitions.
“The best will play, for sure, but when you are at the training ground, you are friends and colleagues. You are not there to fight against each other because you do the same job. What both players want is to see their team win every game or lift some trophies.”
Chelsea FC signed Morata in a £58m deal from La Liga giants Real Madrid in the summer transfer window ahead of Diego Costa’s return to Atletico Madrid.
The Blues have won the Premier League title in two of the past three seasons under Jose Mourinho and then Conte.
The west London side will take on Barcelona in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 clash on Wednesday night.