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20-Aug-2020, 07:42 pm

'Giroud is a tough cookie' - Chelsea forward backed to rise to Werner's challenge

Olivier Giroud Chelsea 2019-20

Olivier Giroud will rise to the challenge of competing with Timo Werner for a place in the Chelsea team, predicts Louis Saha.

Such arrivals will push Giroud, who turns 34 next month, further down the pecking order but it is a situation he is used to.

He looked certain to leave Chelsea last season after losing his place to Tammy Abraham but as the Englishman’s goals dried up and he struggled with injuries, Giroud shone.

He scored in eight of Chelsea’s final 12 Premier League games of the season and the FA Cup semi-final, form which will have won him some admiration from Lampard.

“Olivier Giroud is a very tough cookie and he will not worry too much about the arrival of Timo Werner at Chelsea,” Saha said on the Football Index Podcast. “Giroud wants to score and he wants to help his teammates. He is a competitor and wherever he is, he will always perform.

“Giroud is very motivated and I’m sure that next year we will hear about him again.”

While Giroud hasn't always been the most celebrated striker in the Premier League, he has consistently scored goals throughout his career. He has hit double figures in all competitions in each of the last 13 seasons - a run stretching back to a loan spell at minnows Istres in the French third division as a youngster.

He has 28 goals in 88 appearances in all competitions since joining Chelsea, with many of those appearances having been brief showings from the bench, and Saha wants to see more respect for his fellow French striker.

“I think he is very underrated,” Saha said. “He was criticised when he arrived at Arsenal because people would compare him to stylish players like Thierry Henry or Dennis Bergkamp, but he’s a different player and he scores goals for every club he plays for.”

Giroud and Werner will be hoping to feature in Chelsea’s season opener against Brighton on September 14, after the Premier League fixtures for 2020-21 were revealed on Thursday.

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