Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud says he “cannot accept” the fringe role he’s currently playing under Frank Lampard, although he refused to openly criticise his manager.
The France international has started just one Premier League game all season, only managing 118 minutes of football across league and Champions League action so far, partly thanks to the emergence of Tammy Abraham.
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- Giroud left Arsenal for Chelsea in January 2018.
- He had previously snubbed a move to Everton.
- But since joining Chelsea, he’s started just 14 Premier League games.
- Giroud was last season’s Europa League top scorer with 11 goals.
- He says he cannot accept being on the fringes at Stamford Bridge.
Giroud was the 2018/19 Europa League top scorer with 11 goals as Chelsea lifted the title under Maurizio Sarri, although the Italian also seemed reluctant to field the 33-year-old as often in the Premier League, compounding a frustrating spell at Stamford Bridge.
And asked whether or not he would accept his position on the fringes of the Chelsea attack, Giroud was in defiant mood, but stopped short of criticising Lampard’s decision.
“Accept it? No, I do not accept it,” he said.
“You do not have to be fatalistic in certain situations. I have always been respectful and humble. Even if I do not agree with the coach, I do not criticise him.
“But in myself, I cannot accept it because I know what I’m worth on a pitch. Last year, when I felt I deserved to play, I asked the coach [Sarri] for explanations.”
Giroud still feels his move from Arsenal to Chelsea was one of “progression” for his career, while he is pleased by the fact that he managed to outlast the likes of Alvaro Morata and Gonzalo Higuain in west London.
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“It was not easy to leave Arsenal for Chelsea two years ago. I loved Arsenal,” added Giroud.
“But it was a progression because Chelsea is the English club that has won the most titles, with Manchester City, in the last 10 years.
“I had competitors in attack – Morata, Higuain – who ended up leaving. I won in the end: I played the final of the FA Cup in 2018 and the Europa League final in 2019.
“Once again, I’m starting the season in difficulty, but as my brother said, I have always grown in the face of adversity. Although I would like there to be less of it!”