Sunday 15 September 2019

Giroud furious with himself for not taking his chances, says Wenger

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger

Jeremy Wilson

arsenal boss Arsene Wenger said Olivier Giroud was furious with himself for missing a series of headed chances in the Gunners' draw with Tottenham and has suggested that his striker was simply trying too hard.

Giroud hit the bar, forced several saves from Hugo Lloris and headed one especially inviting chance wide as Arsenal missed the opportunity to go ahead of Manchester City at the top of the Premier League table.

The misses will prompt further debate over whether Wenger has sufficient options at centre-forward to maintain a title challenge, although Giroud's wider run had been seven goals in seven games.

Asked how Giroud felt, Wenger said: "He is very angry. I am pleased. When you see a player who is happy to miss chances, you can worry. He is a real goalscorer and I think he did fight.

"He wanted too much to score, especially the opportunity he had in the six-yard box, but it can happen. I accept that."

Wenger said that he felt both "relief and regret" after Arsenal recovered from 1-0 down and a first half in which he felt they were playing with 10 men due to a mystery bout of dizziness to Santi Cazorla.

"We suffered as Cazorla was at 30 per cent of his potential," said Wenger.

"He was dizzy and so many times I was sitting there, not knowing whether to take him off or not.

"You think maybe he will get better but I took him off and then we were better balanced. Tottenham had a good moment in the second half at 1-0 and Petr Cech kept us in the game. It is a fair point."

Wenger said that Cazorla felt normal again by the end of the match. "He is not sick - he was just dizzy and could not move."

Wenger has concerns over the recent physical load on Laurent Koscielny and Alexis Sanchez going into the international break, but they will respectively now join up with France and Chile.

"I hope we don't lose more players and get some back - we should get [Aaron] Ramsey and [Alex] Oxlade-Chamberlain," he said.

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