Well Arsenal did it. A thoroughly deserved 1-0 win against the baggies when in truth it could and should have been a lot more but hey, any Arsenal fan would have taken a 1-0 before the game. It was an assured defensive performance apart from the one lapse in concentration when Berahino was adjudged to be offside having been put clean through; replays suggested otherwise.
Something was different about the win on Saturday and it was Giroud who fascinated me. Arguably, the brand of football we all know arsenal are capable of producing was lost over the past month. Scrappy goals (apart from Alexis’ wonders) and football that wasn’t exactly neat on the eye. It surprised me how Giroud’s inclusion changed that.
I think many people will agree with me when I say Arsenal showed glimpses of the beautiful football they’re known for on Saturday afternoon. Neat one-two touch passes, in tight spaces around the 18 yard box, creating pretty patterns of play, easy on the eye and it was down to Giroud.
Giroud has been the missing link. He was brilliant. He held the ball up excellently, creating extra space and time for the others around him, allowing them to run off him. Oh and let’s not forget the fancy flicks that Giroud pulls off so well. The midfielders thrived off this. This enabled Arsenal to dance around the box creating plenty of chances and I’m quite sure arsenal will start to put these chances away with Giroud in the side.
The scientist amongst you may argue that it’s not exactly a fair reflection seen as other factors such as Koscielny’s inclusion could have had an influence on Arsenal’s impressive performance. Yes, this could be the case. Arsenal felt they had more freedom going forward knowing they were assured at the back. However, I still believe nobody does Giroud’s ‘linking’ job better than himself.
I think we could see Arsenal put a decent run of wins together now. The players seem to have clicked. Giroud was the missing piece.