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Big Game Olivier Giroud reminisces about ‘very special’ Europa League final win against Arsenal

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One year later

Chelsea v Arsenal - UEFA Europa League Final Photo by Etsuo Hara/Getty Images

Following in the grand tradition of Ashley Cole and (by way of a brief detour) Cesc Fàbregas, Olivier Giroud left Arsenal to join Chelsea two years ago and has not stopped winning trophies. He may have made just 39 starts in those 2.5 seasons since (76 appearances), but two of those starts came in two of the biggest games for the club, the 2017-18 FA Cup final and the 2018-19 Europa League final.

Chelsea won both (see also: France, 2018 World Cup).

In fact, Chelsea have yet to lose a single FA Cup or Europa League match in which Big Game Olivier Giroud (B-GG) has played (20 total games), including the 2-0 win over Liverpool earlier this season that saw us book a place in the quarterfinals (which have been freshly rescheduled for late June).

That winning attitude was on famous display this time last year as well, in Baku. Yesterday was the one-year anniversary of that 4-1 win, our second Europa League trophy (and sixth European trophy altogether), in which Eden Hazard produced a farewell masterclass. But B-GG played a key role as well, scoring once and adding two assists.

That it was against his old club just made it all that much sweeter.

“I scored, I got an assist and I won the penalty so quite a lot of good things happened there for me because I was involved in three goals out of the four that we scored. It was like in a dream because I couldn’t have imagined that it would go so well, so perfectly for us.

“I wanted to win things at Chelsea — that’s why I was even more motivated that night — but winning against your old club like that...”

[CHEF’S KISS]

“...the whole point of the competition is to win the trophy at the end. It’s all about winning. That final was even more special because it was against Arsenal, and I went out there to win the trophy. That’s how you can leave your mark on history, by writing your name in the record books.”

After writing his name in the books, Big Game added a flourish with his instantly legendary post-match celebrations.

“That final against Arsenal was obviously very special for me emotionally. When I saw that we were going to face Arsenal in the final, I knew it was going to be special [...] it was like extra motivation for me because I wanted to show them that I still had some energy in me and some good years left in me.”

-Olivier Giroud; source: Chelsea FC

Giroud has made a habit of showing that he’s still got some good years left in him, and that includes this season at Chelsea. After barely getting a kick in the first half of the season, but unable to leave in January, he took advantage of the a few sudden opportunities to score twice in three Premier League starts just before the pandemic hit.

Armed with a new one-year extension, he just might get a few more chances to keep showing up ... and maybe even keep winning things! (That 2020 FA Cup needs only three more wins...)