Fernando Llorente is not the man to replace Olivier Giroud

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Reports in the Media are strongly suggesting that the awkwardly sized forward, Fernando Llorente is on his way to Arsenal this summer. Juventus are asking for a price of £8.5 million, which to many seems irresistible.

Yet with an almost identical forward already occupying that role, the penny-wise Arsene Wenger must surely look elsewhere to strengthen his forward line.

Olivier Giroud is playing as well as he ever has, but still can't shake off his critics. Hitting the back of the net 19 times in just 36 appearances last season, the France international is certainly one of the more underrated stars of the current Arsenal squad.


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As a result, Llorente is not the answer. The former Athletic Bilbao hotshot is not the same player he was when he was courted by some of Europe's biggest clubs. In the 2011/12 season, the Spaniard scored an impressive 29 goals in 53 appearances, but has never come close to meeting that tally again.

Llorente has followed up that season with, barring his debut season at Juventus, a mediocre goal returns. Giroud, on the other hand seems to finally be able to put his doubters behind him.

Llorente: Last five seasons

  • 2010-11 App- 41 Goals- 19      
  • 2011-12 App- 53 Goals- 29
  • 2012-13 App- 36 Goals- 5
  • 2013-14 App- 45 Goals- 18
  • 2014-15 App- 45 Goals- 9

Giroud: Last five seasons

  • 2010-11 App- 43 Goals- 14
  • 2011-12 App- 42 Goals- 25
  • 2012-13 App- 47 Goals- 17
  • 2013-14 App- 51 Goals- 22
  • 2014-15 App- 36 Goals- 19

Both players have made moves to bigger clubs during this period. Giroud from Montpellier and Llorente from Athletic Bilbao.

At 30 years old Llorente is no longer a player of top quality. Both players would consider hold up play, aerial prowess and strength as their best qualities, so it seems it would be a clueless move by Arsenal.

Arsenal's strong squad

If pre-season is anything to go by then Theo Walcott is a certainty to be Giroud's main competition. So Arsenal have the powerful forward in Giroud, the speedster in Walcott and the youthful Chuba Akpom, who fans hope will be given a chance to impress.

If Walcott, as expected, moves inside as a centre forward then maybe a winger needs to be brought in as you can't rely on Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to stay away from the treatment table for too long.

Last season, Aaron Ramsey often was played on the right-wing, but if he's to play at his best he must be played more centrally.

Options may be to promote youngsters like Alex Iwobi and Jeff Rene-Adelaide or splash the money promised by Lord Harris. The dream signing for the fans must be Marco Reus.

Wenger still has many questions before the season kicks off. But one thing for sure is Llorente is not the answer.

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