Chelsea backup striker Olivier Grioud has shown no indication of wanting to leave, and has in fact done nothing but talk up his own and the club’s ambitions for the upcoming season, which is why the story that emerged yesterday about a contract agreement and potential transfer to Juventus was so surprising.
We figured they were likely nothing more than fabrication, and we didn’t have to wait too long to get confirmation of that from the man himself. Giroud was the guest on Telefoot’s ‘Culture Foot’ program tonight, and that gave him the opportunity to literally laugh off those suggestions.
⚽️ CULTURE FOOT [EXCLU]— TELEFOOT LA CHAINE DU FOOT (@telefoot_chaine) September 11, 2020
Olivier #Giroud restera-t-il à @ChelseaFC ?
Ou s’offrira-t-il un dernier challenge d’envergure à la @juventusfc ?
️ L’international français commente les dernières rumeurs qui l’expédient en Italie...#mercato @ThibaultLeRol pic.twitter.com/JrtY4oIZkw
Once past the initial reaction, Giroud related his own surprise at seeing those rumors and confirmed that his focus is firmly on Chelsea.
Given that Giroud openly discussed his intentions to leave Chelsea in January when it looked like his career at Stamford Bridge was well and truly over, we have little reason to doubt the veracity of his comments in this case as well.
Giroud on Telefoot: "I was surprised to receive messages from friends this morning telling me about this rumour. That's far from the case; I am a #CFC player.— Nizaar Kinsella (@NizaarKinsella) September 11, 2020
He adds:"It's always good to get the attention of these kinds of clubs, it's flattering.But I remain focused on Chelsea" https://t.co/FWDHOeBgZ6
Giroud may be ostensibly the third-choice center forward at the club right now, but as he proved last season, and as he said a couple times this summer already, he’s a different style of player than either Tammy Abraham or Timo Werner (especially Werner), and could thus still play a key role in Chelsea’s goals this season — both literally and figuratively.
“I didn’t have the great end of the season that I did to leave like this, and not believe in my chances. I will fight for my place.
“[Lampard] can evolve, [he] is not stuck in one tactical system. Werner brings us another string to our bow. He has different qualities to mine, so that makes me think that’s not such a bad thing. We could complement each other.
“I hope that I can continue the momentum I have had. I have high hopes for the future.”
Things can of course change quickly in football and the transfer window is open for another month yet. If Giroud were to pack up and leave, it would be hard to fault him — he very much wants to stay in the conversation for France ahead of Euro
2020 2021 — though it would be a bit surprising after all the things that have been said. Him and Lampard maintained very clear and open lines of communication last season, and we’d expect that to continue this season as well.
“Italians, they get carried away quickly [but] it’s always good to get the attention of these kinds of clubs, it’s flattering.
“But I remain focused on Chelsea. We will see what will happen in the coming weeks. But there is nothing signed or done. I prefer to deny it.”
-Olivier Giroud; source: Telefoot via Goal
We prefer that as well.