Arsenal Ties Kept Giroud At The Emirates
Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud admits that he was close to joining Everton this summer. The France international was linked with a £20million transfer to Goodison Park. There were also rumours of interest from Ligue 1 sides Marseille and Lyon, but it was the Toffees who were closest to signing the 31-year-old, something he admitted in an interview with French TV station Canal Plus.
“I was very close to signing at another English club in Everton,” said Giroud “but I made the best choice I think.
“I stayed quite simply because of a certain attachment to the club.
“I have a lot of respect for Marseille. I was a fan for years when I was a kid, with Papin, Waddle and company, and I also have a lot of respect for Lyon.
“There was no interest, not because of those clubs, but it was in relation to a return to France. I am happy in England.
“Any return to Ligue 1 will have to wait. I am not against the idea, I would be pleased.”
Everton are being linked with a fresh bid in the January transfer window having eyed up Giroud as the replacement for Romelu Lukaku.
But the arrival of Alexandre Lacazette this summer has meant that Giroud remains down the pecking order for Arsenal. He started just 11 Premier League games last season and was a substitute in 18 others having started 26 league games in 2015-16.
So far this season he has appeared in all seven of Arsenal’s Premier League matches but only as a substitute for a total of 133 minutes of football. His only starts have come in the Europa League and the Carabao Cup.