London, Dec 27: Chelsea forward Olivier Giroud is likely to depart from Stamford Bridge this Summer and this news has attracted several top sides from different European leagues. The 33-year-old played a pivotal role in Chelsea’s Europa League success last term but has found chances to impress hard to come by this term.
Giroud has fallen down the pecking order since Frank Lampard's arrival this summer. He has made just seven appearances under Lampard this season. This is notably due to Chelsea starlet Tammy Abraham’s sublime form in front of goal which has seen him develop as Lampard’s first-choice attacker, while another possibility Michy Batshuayi appears to have overtaken the French forward in the pecking order recently.
His limited game-time has already concerned France manager Didier Deschamps and a warning has already been delivered to the player that his such lack of first-team football can not continue long and the forward may have to find a solution in January before losing his place in French XI to another in-form player.
The World Cup winner too apparently has recognised that his likely integral role for France in the European Championships next summer could be in doubt if he can’t get some minutes under his belt and thus a January move is likely to transpire now. Chelsea is open to signing players now reportedly too would not stand in the player's way if he decides to leave.
So which clubs have registered interest in him?
Giroud has been prolific in his national colours and as per latest reports is not at all short of top suitors. Premier League side Crystal Palace reportedly made an enquiry for the player. However, from Chelsea to Palace, the jump surely is a downgrade. The London side surely could manage his reported wage of £110,000-a-week, but the player might prefer a more ambitious side.
Antonio Conte too reportedly has shown interest in the player. Conte is a big fan of the former Arsenal striker and actually brought him to Chelsea whilst he was in charge of the London club. The Italian side so far has developed a strong unit upfront with the pair of Lukaku and Martinez however are short of options with their backup. Giroud only has six months left in his deal and would not command heavy fee either which could also make him an ideal stop-gap option.
Some recent reports had claimed that the French man is a target for the Scottish side with a loan move on the mind. Definitely, it would have been a big statement of intent from Gerrard's team but the former Liverpool boss has dismissed the idea. A move does look extremely unlikely.
There have not been any concrete reports, but there are noises that several Ligue 1 sides are plotting a January move for the player. With him available on the cheap, Lyon, Marseille and Nice all have reportedly enquired for the player. Giroud surely has one or two years top football left in him and making a move to his old place, in a lower physical or limelight at such junction of his career would surely be beneficial for him.