Week after week, it’s becoming harder for the pundits to admit they got it wrong about Olivier Giroud, who let’s be honest has had his doubters.
But it seems the Frenchman is finally finding himself again, as he picked up yet another impressive 90 minutes at the Emirates on Saturday afternoon.
His influence is what keeps this Arsenal side at third place for another week, and gives them some much needed momentum, as he looks to carry his league form over to Monaco on Wednesday night.
WhoScored Rating: 8.8
Arsenal looked comfortable in this London derby, as they typically controlled play from the first whistle, with Giroud coming in for Danny Welbeck, who started in his place during Monday night’s FA Cup victory.
Giroud became frustrated by a West Ham side who looked organised at the back, and the likes of Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez struggled to find the striker for much of the opening period.
Right on the stroke of half time Giroud was rewarded for his patience, as some intricate passing led to West Ham’s defence backing off, which led to him powering home a left-footed effort past goalkeeper, Adrian.
The Frenchman landed 4/4 of the aerial duels he took on, which was then accompanied by a pass rate of 66% which is significantly lower than Welbeck. But play was tight around the box, and for Giroud to pick up 59 touches, it is clear to see he is capable of playing the game on the floor just as much.
Giroud took on three shots overall, with one of them resulting in the opening goal, which inevitably dealt the massive blow to Sam Allardyce’s men.
Ultimately it will come down to the big games where Giroud is judged, but the fact he’s picking up important goals like today may just be a sign that we missed him before Christmas.