He rounded the goakeeper, the fans rose in anticipation... and he hit it into the side netting. Just like his golden chance on his debut against Sunderland, Olivier Giroud spurned a perfect opportunity to become a hero on Saturday.
With Chelsea 2-1 up, Giroud could have become an instant hero by scoring the equaliser in such an important game, and erased memories of his slow start.
Here's what he had to say about it on Arsenal's website;
“It was a good pass from Alex (Oxlade-Chamberlain) and I think that I needed to go round the keeper as he came out quickly. If I chipped the ball, the defender could have saved it. So I think I made the right call.”
Forgive us for being overly-critical, but is his attitude symptomatic of what's wrong?
Clearly he didn't make the right call, because he missed. Instead of defending himself, Giroud should be talking about how with hindsight it was the wrong move, because he didn't pull it off.
Football is a game of such fine margins, the right call is only the right one if you score.
It seems as though the pressure is building on him already, and even if the idea was 'right' in trying to round the 'keeper, his execution was off. When the goals come so will the plaudits, but the striker shouldn't try to defend a miss like that, simply move on.
What do you think of Giroud's start at the Emirates? Will he come good?
image: © ronnie macdonald