Bien Joué Giroud by Dan Smith
In the same week I have debated with my peers about Eddie Nketiah’s suitability to score goals at the highest level, Oliver Giroud was getting a standing ovation by the French media after knocking England out of the World Cup.
In the last two weeks his 4 goals have made him his nations greatest ever scorer (plus a contender for the Golden Boot).
This the same competition he won 4 years ago when he started every game for the World Champions.
Of course, the two striker’s careers are on opposite ends, one just beginning, one past his peak.
Yet Giroud is the perfect reflection of the flaws in a section of our fanbase.
I know Gooners who view any questioning of Eddie Nketiah as being negative or having an agenda.
The only agenda being that we have a generation of fans who think the definition of a supporter is to never critique anything about the club (apparently Mbappe is not as good as as Martinelli?) and/or they can’t admit they were wrong and that we have regressed since Mr Wenger left, like somehow that would make them look weak.
I can show you the same peers who defend Eddie who mocked Giroud. When I say mock, I mean unpleasant comments. That’s despite 105 goals for Arsenal
I have listened to YouTubers preach how we should support Nketiah and show loyalty, the very same channels which got their views based on verbally abusing Giroud.
That was his thanks for only five people in our entire history scoring more times for the Gunners.
I would get mocked for defending him, that only increased when I said we should re-sign him as a free agent, when we were (still are) screaming out for a plan B.
Say that out loud for a moment ………..
I can be called negative (and other words) if I think Eddie scoring in 3 League games since January is not good enough for title contenders and that it will cost us.
Yet the same fans writing that used to call Giroud all kinds when he’s only one of 6 men to score over 100 goals for the Arsenal.
That’s why I was never offended by his Europa League celebrations after Baku.
Let’s be honest he had been written off, on and off the pitch, with everyone’s attention being on getting Aubameyang. We essentially were prepared to give him to Chelsea to speed up the deal.
The Frenchman left with little fanfare or acknowledgement of his contributions in ending our trophy drought (3 FA Cups) and coming 2nd in the Prem (bearing in mind fans now view 5th as progress !!!).
Arsene Wenger once warned we were in danger as a fanbase of losing the proud values we were famous for.
Giroud’s treatment by some during and after living in North London was disrespectful.
Some acted like we were above having a forward of his quality and that the grass would be greener for us without him.
The grass was greener for him.
It’s hard not to see the irony of him destroying us in a European Final.
If I had been called a lamppost, the C word, told to, ‘eff off out of my club’, all the while keeping a dignified silence, I truly would have pointed out that irony.
The striker was always professional, and you could never question his work rate.
There were games where you could fault his finishing but never his effort.
That’s his legacy and that why he’s the perfect comparison to an Eddie Nketiah in terms of who the 23 old should be looking up to.
When discussing Eddie, there are those who don’t want any stats to be included based on substitute appearances.
I was thinking is this a generational thing, a sense of entitlement.
That essentially an opportunity only counts as an opportunity if they feel comfortable.
So, a teenager makes his debut in 2017 and 5 years, 111 matches later, we are still saying he hasn’t had a chance?
Not why have you not used those times to make an impact and make a manager pick you?
Not what are you not doing in training for a coach to trust you?
Simply, he’s not allowed to be judged till he starts consecutive League matches and if he doesn’t that’s not his fault?
Yet I grew up with the understanding that to chase your dream, you make every moment count, because you might not get another one.
If you have an acting audition, you prepare like it’s your last.
If a producer gives you 30 seconds to sing, you make that the best 30 seconds ever…. you don’t complain it’s someone else’s fault for not giving you longer.
It’s a worrying mindset which wrong educates the next generation.
If you’re playing good for your local team and the scouts show up on a Thursday for an hour, that hour counts, it’s no good saying but if they had come on another day, it would have been better.
It’s that mentality would has allowed Eddie’s agent to demand 100,000 pound a week for doing nothing.
Why get your client a move elsewhere to prove himself when he can get a huge salary for scoring in the odd cup outing (and apparently not being judged on his sub appearances).
Giroud had the opposite attitude, he made a career out of getting the best out of scraps, scoring 20 times in the Prem when coming off the bench, which is only bettered by one other player (see, you can contribute as a sub).
At 32, written off by us as past his best, he won over skeptical Chelsea fans by winning three pieces of silverware, including a 4th FA Cup and a Champions League.
Not starting at Stamford Bridge, Deschamps was critiqued by the French media for choosing Giroud as his centre forward.
As a 35-year-old free agent he went to Milan, contributing 14 goals to help them win Serie A for the first time in over a decade.
His winner at the weekend was his 4th of the tournament.
So, a player we discarded as a lamp-post has since won a World Cup, Champions League, Europa League, Serie A and FA Cup.
We now celebrate 5th!
I would still have him at the Emirates.
I still argue he gives you an alternative option.
Some of my peers don’t think Mbappe would get in our team so I know what reaction that would receive
Including Ligue 1, Giroud can one day show his children a collection of medals.
He can look them in the eye and said he believed in himself and made every opportunity count.
He squeezed the life out of every moment, he chased his dreams and caught them, never settling.
Bien Joué Giroud
Once a Gooner, always a Gooner
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