Arsenal star Olivier Giroud has sensationally hit back at Gunners legend Thierry Henry after the former forward questioned whether Arsene Wenger would be able to win the league without buying another striker.
Speaking to French newspaper L’Equipe, as relayed by Goal, Giroud has branded Henry ‘dull’ and insisted that the words had hurt his pride. Having bagged 14 Premier League goals so far this term the Arsenal striker has to some degree silenced critics who have suggested he isn’t prolific enough in front of goal.
For Henry though Giroud’s direct contribution just isn’t enough, and he made his thoughts clear via his position as a pundit on Sky Sports. His compatriot thought has since expressed his annoyance, adding to a situation that Wenger might well want to keep an eye on.
Article continues below
"I heard he was saying too many dull things. That was a bomb and it had its desired effect,” Giroud supposedly said.
“It was surprising to hear him take apart the team. I say 'team' because it wasn't just me, it was the spine. I think he's wrong.
Article continues below
“I didn't enjoy hearing it. Coming from an ex-France and Arsenal striker, it's a shame. It was a bit easy for him to say that after Chelsea game.
“We were doing well, unbeaten in 10, my stats were good. It hurt my pride.”
He then added jokingly: “Maybe [Henry] was angry that I needed fewer games than him to score 50 goals for Arsenal.”
Too harsh on Giroud?
Whilst it’s fair to take the stance that players like Giroud should be careful when they fire-back at legends such as Henry, it also must be said that the former Barcelona man may have been a little harsh in his criticism of a man who has shown good improvement this term.
Though Giroud might never be a 20-goal-a-season striker he links up with others well and as the spearhead of Wenger’s attack he’s been efficient in going about his duties this year, as evidenced by the fact the Gunners sit behind only Chelsea and Manchester City in terms of goals scored.
Does Henry have a point?
That said if Arsenal want to push on and provide a real challenge for the Premier League title next year they may have to add a natural goalscorer to their ranks, if only to increase their ability to score goals when the tide isn’t necessarily in their favour.
The likes of Sergio Aguero and Diego Costa have that trait in their respective lockers, which is why they’re ranked amongst the leading strikers in world football, whereas Giroud doesn’t carry the same threat.
In this respect there are a few targets Wenger might be prepared to consider, the most obvious of whom he has been linked with in the past. FC Porto’s Jackson Martinez is a player who continues to impress on the continent but has yet to test his mettle in a major European league, whilst former Real Madrid forward Gonzalo Higuain could be another reputable name should Wenger be willing to part with the necessary cash.
Arsenal fans, do you think Giroud is right to hit back at Henry? Was Henry being fair in the first place? Do you need to sign another striker this summer? Let us know your thoughts in the comments box below.