Part of what makes a great striker is the team he has around him. Chelsea have been able to assemble a team of fantastic forwards and midfielders, but that notwithstanding, our first choice striker, Alvaro Morata has misfired for most of the season. He has only scored twelve times in the EPL this season, after making 29 appearances for Chelsea. It doesn’t seem like a bad return for a striker in his debut season in a league as difficult as the EPL, but when you compare that to the number of chances squandered, it leaves little to be desired. And it’s not even a question of adapting to the league because he seems to have gotten that just right — he only needs work more on his finishing.
It is Morata’s annoying knack for missing sitters that prompted Chelsea to sign Olivier Giroud from Arsenal in January. The French man may not be an Aubemyang, but he certainly seems to know how to put the ball away in the net more than his Spanish colleague. In 11 appearances for Chelsea, six of which were from the bench, Giroud has scored three times in the league, and all of them have been important ones.
Like Morata, Giroud knows how to use his head, but unlike the Spain international, he can also use his legs very well. He is smart, and can make something of the slimmest chances. He’s older than Morata, at 31, but his experience has added some value to Chelsea in more ways than one. His goal on Sunday is a good example of just what he can do, given some space in the opposition goal.
The summer transfer window will soon be here, as the season ends, and we’ll be looking to boost our attacking options. A striker might be on the shopping list, but I can’t but wonder if that would be in our best interest given that we have decent strikers in Giroud and Morata, and a Michy Batshuayi that performed well on loan. If we put the French man ahead of the pecking order, that would mean more games, and definitely increases his chances of getting even more goals. I know he isn’t exactly perfect, but I doubt he’d miss the kinds of chances that went begging with Morata in front.
It’s only a thought, of course, but one I consider worthy of some contemplation. Can Giroud lead our lean next season? I think he just might. What do you think?