Ironically 2007 was a year that saw a tectonic shift in the sporting world for two major sporting outfits. So big was the impact of this year that in 2013 both teams are still yearning from the past, with their fans chanting the names of their forgotten heroes.
The first: Shane Warne, Mr 708 wickets, retired from Australia’s national cricket team. The second: Thierry Henry, the master of Highbury, accepted a new challenge for Catalan giants Barcelona thus leaving a club which saw him score 174 league goals in 254 games (0.68 GPG).
The internet doesn’t have enough space to cover off on the Australian cricket team – nor does anyone really care because the Premier League is back. However it is interesting to assess whether or not the Arsenal have finally replaced their prodigal Gunner.
Enter Olivier Giroud, after five years of ‘potentials’ and a couple of seasons of wanting to believe in A-de-ba-yor (to the tune of Big Ben), Arsenal finally has another French striker brimming with potential and wanting to take over the world. Here are five reasons why this kid might well be the next player to score over 150 goals for the superstars from London N6:
1. Vive Le Passion!
Henry was as genuine a striker as you are going to get – he stays forward and creates room –if you don’t deliver he’ll tell you about it. Giroud plays the position in a similar elk, commanding respect from his much more timid playing group of Walcott and Carzola. His passion for quality is infectious; let’s just hope Wilshire gets his anger out on FIFA14.
2. Start Slow, Aim High
Giroud is 37 league games for 14 goals (.38 GPG). This is decidedly slower than Henry who was at about (0.5) at the same time, however Giroud has not had the luxury of upping the stats through penalties.
3. The Champ is Here!
He may not have as high levels of self-worth as one Nicholas Bendtner, but Giroud is a very confident guy. Don’t believe me: check out his latest Instagram photo here. I wonder what Spain think of that… And Brazil… And Argentina…
4. There is a twinkle in the Gaffers eye
‘Exceptional’. That’s what Wenger labelled his performance against that other team from North London that sells players and comes 5th all the time. He genuinely feels he has the goods and ticks all the boxes from a manager’s perspective.
5. This Man is a Gooner
He looks like a Gooner, he acts like a Gooner, he’s passionate, he’s French and he plays to win. If photos of him getting to second base with Cheryl Cole were to appear in The Sun he might well be tattoo worthy.
Only time will tell if Giroud is going to achieve our expectations or prove to be yet another imitation. All that can be said is that the club needs him to reach his potential. The Arsenal need him to score 30 goals this year or else it is off to Europa. One thing we can all be assured of however, he is a hell of a lot better than Nathan Lyon of the Australian Cricket Team, probably bowls better than him too.