In the same week that the Arsenal and France international striker Olivier Giroud spoke again about the comments made by his predecessor for club and country towards the end of last season, Thierry Henry has healed the rift between the two forwards even further.
I do not know whether Henry had his words about Giroud and Arsenal’s need to sign a top quality striker in mind when he spoke to Sky Sports about his thoughts on how the Premier League title race will shape up in the coming months. However, the former Gunner seems to have a lot more faith in our chances of lifting the trophy in May than he did before.
Henry expects it to be a really hard fought season at the top and he expects the Gunners to be there or thereabouts at the end. So with Arsene Wenger having added no new front men to the Arsenal squad, thus far at least, I would have to assume that Henry no longer harbours such doubts about our lack of firepower.
Henry said, “Have a look at the competition now to win the league. It is very, very, very difficult, so I expect everyone is going to challenge them, everyone is going to try to make sure they can win the title.
“Because if I said to you: ‘City cannot have the same season again, Arsenal cannot stay another year without winning the league, United won’t accept not winning the league two years in a row’ – that does not go down too well over there. What about Liverpool? So I expect everyone to challenge them.
“You would like to point at the usual subjects – United, Arsenal and City – but who would have said Liverpool a year ago would have nearly won the league? No one saw that coming.
“So you always have a surprise and you don’t know when that is going to happen and maybe it is going to be a team that is going to surprise the other teams next season. But you would like to think it will be the same kind of top four.”
Giroud, who was really not happy when he first heard Henry’s comments on the Arsenal striker situation, has also said that he now understands what his fellow Frenchman was trying to say, that the club needs options up front and cannot win the title with just Giroud, as explained by a report in The Mirror.
Giroud said, “The main thing is not to have any doubt when you miss a chance or miss a game, it can happen sometimes.
“The best thing is to forget about the comment straight away, keep the head up and not let it affect your qualities. I know Thierry and I knew what he meant.
“If I see him we will have a conversation between two men. I’m not angry against him, but it’s true that I didn’t understand at first.
“But I think he reacted about his words and explained them more. I’m not going to be upset about that. I’m sleeping well and as long as my family is OK, that’s the main thing. So it doesn’t affect me much.”
So have Arsenal got enough firepower with Giroud, Walcott, Akpom, Alexis and Welbeck?