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Giroud is aiming to forge partnership with Welbeck

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Arsenal's Olivier Giroud prepares to make his comeback today against Manchester United after three months out. Hope&Glory/Handout Photo/PA Wire

Arsenal's Olivier Giroud prepares to make his comeback today against Manchester United after three months out. Hope&Glory/Handout Photo/PA Wire

Arsenal's Olivier Giroud prepares to make his comeback today against Manchester United after three months out. Hope&Glory/Handout Photo/PA Wire

As the summer transfer window ticked down, you had to wonder whether Olivier Giroud was sharing the same excitement as those Arsenal fans who were preventing the poor Sky Sports News reporter from doing his job outside the Emirates.

Giroud was laid up with the 3cm leg fracture that had occurred nine days earlier when his ankle and foot bones jarred together amid the freakish force of a Sylvain Distin clearance for Everton. Arsenal had already spent £31m on Alexis Sanchez but, in also recruiting £16m Danny Welbeck with minutes of the window remaining, they had added a second player with the potential to take Giroud's place.

So was he worried? As Giroud prepares to make his comeback today against Manchester United after three months out, he could not be more emphatic.

"We needed another striker," he says. "It's good for competition. I think it will be better for the strikers to have plenty of options up front. I am happy with that. If you are good on the pitch, good in training, you will have your chance."

Although Giroud is clearly best suited to playing the central role with his back to goal and linking up Arsenal's attacking play, both Sanchez and Welbeck have proved adept in any of the three attacking positions that surround the striker in Arsene Wenger's usual 4-2-3-1 formation.

Wenger has also experimented both with two wingers in a 4-1-4-1 system and two strikers in an old-school 4-4-2.

"Danny likes to move a lot," says Giroud. "I think me, Danny and Alexis are complementary. All three together? Why not?"

Giroud then also mentions Mesut Ozil, Theo Walcott and Santi Cazorla. He is adamant that, once the injuries subside, this Arsenal squad now has the potential to go beyond regular top-four finishes and again win the Premier League title.

"The way the club has recruited these last few years, we can see the ambition," he says. "We spent a bit more money than before. I think we have everything except we had bad luck with injuries these last months, but I think we will do a good end of the season.

"Before, we had the quality but not too much quantity. Now we have the quality and the quantity.

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"Chelsea have a big advantage, 12 points, but you never know. It's not over."

(© Daily Telegraph, London)


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