There was a bittersweet feeling as Olivier Giroud departed Chelsea this summer to join AC Milan.
The forward undoubtedly goes down as one of our best signings in recent years, scoring big goals on route to winning the FA Cup in 2018, Europa League in 2019 and Champions League in 2021.
Across his 39 goals for Chelsea, many were memorable, filled with class and elegance that only the beautiful beard of the Frenchman could produce. After starting his new chapter in Milan well with two goals in his first five appearances for the Rossoneri, the striker has reflected on his Blues departure.
His quotes not only detail his decision to make a move elsewhere after signing a contract extension in May, but also a transfer trend that has continued between Chelsea and Arsenal.
Speaking to talkSPORT, the 35-year-old said “[I spent] three seasons-and-a-half there [at Chelsea]. I had an amazing time at Arsenal but [at Chelsea] I can say even more because I won the big titles.
“It was emotionally difficult to leave when I left Montpellier and Arsenal, but even more tough [at Chelsea] because I didn’t play the last three months so it was evidence for me to leave and go for another challenge.
“I felt frustrated a little bit to not play the last three months because I contributed well to the Champions League success by finishing top scorer for the team. But what can I say? We were so successful and I am so pleased with the FA Cup, Europa League and Champions League. I scored a few important goals.
“It was tough to leave Chelsea and the Premier League but at the end of the day I think it was the best solution for me.”
The admission of sadness proves how much Giroud enjoyed his time in west London, not only becoming a popular figure in the first team with some big trophies but also how supporters truly embraced him from the off after joining from a bitter London rival in 2018. Singing his name and regularly praising his underrated talent, which majorly helped us secure Champions League qualification at the end of the 2019/20 season.
It brings back memories of the way Cesc Fabregas became a beloved figure at Chelsea after signing from Barcelona in 2014, and is responsible for one of the club’s best chants in recent years.
Fabregas, who came through Arsenal’s academy to develop into one of the Premier League’s best talents, cried tears of sadness as we were clapped off following his final game at Stamford Bridge in January 2019 before leaving for Monaco.
Probably the strongest example of all is Chelsea legend Ashley Cole after signing from the Gunners in 2006 and going on to become one of our best players to Arsenal fans rage. Winning a Premier League, a European Cup, four FA Cups and one League Cup.
Embarrassingly for Arsenal, the opposite route does not quite bring the same bragging rights.
Petr Cech’s 2015 signing was supposed to save Arsene Wenger’s side “10 to 15 points” needed to win the Premier League. That did not happen, as Arsenal stumbled behind Leicester City and then Chelsea in the title race– as Cech famously passed the ball to Fabregas to round off the scoring in a 3-1 win at Stamford Bridge which ended Arsenal’s slim title hope in 2017.
Oh and do not bring up David Luiz and Willian around any Arsenal fans you know.
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Source by Football London