Olivier Giroud admits France coach urged him to leave Arsenal
Olivier Giroud has admitted that France national team coach Didier Deschamps advised him to switch clubs during the winter transfer window. The 31-year-old ended his five-and-a-half year stay with Arsenal to join Chelsea on the final day of the winter transfer window.
In an interview with Telefoot, Giroud admitted that Deschamps urged him to pursue a fresh challenge away from the Emirates as he remains one of the regulars in the Les Bleus setup.
Giroud, however, clarified that it was his own personal choice to join Chelsea with the likes of Borussia Dortmund, Sevilla and AS Roma having also expressed an interest in his signature.
"I spoke with Didier Deschamps. He did not tell me to join Chelsea but just to change clubs. Dortmund was interested, but for a loan, there was Seville too and at one point my agent received a call from Roma," he said.
"But my choice was quite clear and obvious when I knew that Antonio Conte wanted to work with me. I know that Conte appreciates my profile, we work well together."
Giroud racked 105 goals in over 250 games for Arsenal in all competitions, and he is now set to compete with Alvaro Morata for the number one role at Stamford Bridge.
The Frenchman's arrival has been received with mixed reaction from the Blues' faithful, but he has the chance to make an instant impression when they club take on Watford on Monday night.