Arsene Wenger comments on Giroud criticised

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Arsene Wenger has placed Olivier Giroud under unnecessary scrutiny after hailing the striker as one of the top players in Europe, at least that is the opinion of former Arsenal star Perry Groves.

The Gunners had looked to recruit a forward of some repute during the summer transfer window, but Giroud has made the failure to land a proven goalscorer relatively redundant given his fine start to the season.

Giroud has found the net on four occasions for Arsenal this term, and the France international's recent progress has led Wenger to publicly rate his player among the best in the business.

Groves, however, is not sure he agrees with the assertion of the Arsenal manager, and believes Wenger has now placed Giroud under too much pressure to continue leading the Gunners line to distinction.

"Giroud has improved immeasurably,” he told talkSPORT.

“He did OK last season, got his 17 goals and led the line very well, but he’s not in the company of [Gonzalo] Higuain and [Luis] Suarez because he’s not done it on a consistent basis.

“He reminds him of Alan Smith. He had a quiet first season [at Arsenal], took his time to bed in, then was sensational in the two title-winning seasons.

“Giroud is good at holding the ball up, good in the air, he’s got decent pace, his finishing is good, but you don’t want to put your players under too pressure.

“[Wenger’s comments] have highlighted Giroud now and he would probably have liked to go about his business quietly.”

Giroud, meanwhile, is set to start for Arsenal in their Champions League encounter with Napoli at the Emirates Stadium in Tuesday evening.

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