Previous reports of Olivier Giroud heading back to London from Swansea, where Arsenal are set to play in about an hour, have been proven wrong, at least for now, as the 31-year-old center forward has been included in Wenger’s matchday squad. Giroud isn’t starting, as per usual, but he is on the bench as one of the seven available substitutes.
This is probably nothing to be concerned about, given all the reports of Chelsea and Arsenal agreeing a transfer earlier today; it’s probably just a question of logistics. Plenty of time still for Giroud to get back to London (along with the rest of the Arsenal squad) before heading over to West London to complete his medical and sign on the dotted line. He already missed the registration deadline for Chelsea’s match tomorrow anyway, so it’s not like it makes a difference in that regard.
Giroud's agent has now confirmed that the Frenchman is in the squad for tonight's game despite him being on the verge of joining Chelsea. #SCFCvAFC— Chris Wheatley (@ChrisWheatley_) January 30, 2018
As long as he doesn’t get hurt tonight, we should be fine.
(Will be an interesting question to see if Chelsea do something similar with Batshuayi tomorrow ... UPDATE: We can’t; the Bundesliga transfer window closes at 6pm CET, which is 6 hours earlier than the Premier League window, which closes at 11pm GMT)