Is Arsenal’s Giroud the ‘world’s best target man’?

Olivier Giroud has been hailed as the world’s best target man by his former team-mate Younes Belhanda, but would Arsenal fans agree?

The French striker has been consistent in front of goal in his time at the Emirates, having joined from Marseille back in 2012.

Olivier has never scored more than 16 Premier League goals in a season, a tally he has hit twice since his move, but in only one of those campaigns did he feature in almost every minute of the league term.

Giroud has struggled with niggling injuries, and the Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger appears to have countered that by rotating him in and out of the starting line-up, as well rarely allowing him to complete the full 90 minutes when he does start, and it can be difficult to hit such number in such time.

It’s the lack of goals which has left doubt in Arsenal fans mind as to his real ability, but his goal-per-minute ration has always been more than respectable, even if he has had the odd barren spell.

Giroud now has tough competition for his first-team role, and Alexandre Lacazette appears to be winning that battle currently, but former team-mate Younes Belhanda has high praise for his former team-mate.

“For me, Olivier is one of the best forwards in his role,” Belhanda said.

“He’s someone who keeps the ball up really well, who knows how to make his number 10 or his wingers play because he has a target man game few strikers have.

“There isn’t a striker in the world who’s better than him as a target man. Especially with the France team, he scores, so you can’t hold anything against him.

“At club level, he doesn’t play that much, but when you have a player in the national team who scores and helps the team win, you can’t say anything.”-

Does Giroud get enough credit for what he does for the team? Is he the best target man around?

Pat J

Tags Arsenal Belhanda Giroud lacazette


  1. Tony says:

    Manjukic, mario gomez they r still alive. Mario gomez is doing amazing work since his last long term injury in 2014.
    Giroud missed many tap ins n sitters till date thats why wenger agreed to bring another stricker.

  2. Jim A says:

    Yes he is. Target men will never have the same one on one chances with the keeper that a mobile fast player has but he can bring out the best in the players around him. I believe his vision for the pass is extraordinarily high.

  3. gotanidea says:

    Giroud is lacking in skills and movements. If he doesn’t play as one of Arsenal’s main strikers, he will not be consistently called for France.

    He saved Arsenal many times because of his headers and strength, but we cannot call him the “world’s best target man”. There are many other tall target men that possess better skills, such as Cavani, Lukaku, Morata, Ibrahimovic, etc.

    A tall and strong target man would be needed in Arsenal’s system, to battle their opponent’s physicalities. Shorter skillful forwards like Lacazette and Mbappe would benefit from the partnership with striker like Giroud.

  4. jon fox says:

    Well, there are not too many top target men around these days and that style of highly effective forward is fast disappearing at TOP level. I would put Lukaku above Giroud, in the Prem. Since mobility, quick on the turn and moving the ball around very quickly, is now the accepted norm at TOP level, which I stress,(as at lower league level they are still around) the days of true targetmen, strong, often not that quick but hard working and generally liked by teammates for always being an outlet for the long ball, when necessary, are fast disappearing. So to answer the question, well yes, Olivier is ONE of the best of the very few in the Prem. His goals to minutes played ration is actually rather better than than respectable, as the writer correctly points out.

  5. Nothing changed says:

    Not even close.

  6. Liam says:

    Just a though, how about plaing 3 upfront with giroud as the ACM target man with Laca further forward on the right and same with Sanchez on the left some call it a false nine role. He stay with his back to the last defender looking to play the wide forward through or link up with Wilshere with the little one two’s

    Musti Kos Monreal
    Bellerin Saed
    Wilshere Coq
    Laca Sanchez

  7. Gunner4Life says:

    Giroud is kinda 4-4-2 sort of striker.. Where one used to be a tall and strong.. And the other one quick and mobile.. In today’s World someone like Antoine Greizmann.. N We’ve seen Him working wonderfully wid Greizmann.. They both understand each other very well and Giroud’s such playing style benefits Greizmann even more.. Maybe We won’t get Greizmann easily but someone like even Dries Mertens would be superb.. But.. As of now, We have Laca so.. I just hope Wenger experiments on playing Giroud and Laca together rather other out of this World experiments…. Anyways.. #COYG

  8. Fola says:

    Olivier Giroud transferred from Montpellier not Marseille.
    Very good point man, grossly underrated

  9. deleny says:

    just maybe many dnt knw what a target man is.

  10. Nothing changed says:

    To be considered the world best target man IMO you have to at least once score 20 PL goals on 1 season.

  11. The barrel says:

    Since coming to Arsenal, I’ve never seen him dribbling past one defender. He lacks movement and skill. No counter attack when Giroud is playing, because he is too slow. When he gets the ball, he turns around to face his own goalkeeper. Only strong In the air.

  12. The barrel says:

    I was so disappointed when Arsenal sold Gervinho and kept Giroud. You sell a mobile player and keep a donkey that cannot turn around. Giroud is far from being a good striker. Some people need luck to make it in life

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