By the time the January window rolled round, it was very clear that Olivier Giroud was going to be leaving.
Not only was he not starting for Frank Lampard, he had fallen significantly below Michy Batshuayi in the pecking order, so that even when Tammy Abraham was given a break, it was never Giroud stepping into the breach.
He clearly wanted to go and play, while Chelsea were happy to let him – once they could sign a replacement.
That proved more difficult than anticipated, and once it was clear nobody wanted to sell us a striker for a reasonable cost, we decided to tell him he was staying. Giroud was understandably upset, but it all worked out for the best as he ended up playing a decent amoubt.
In quotes picked up by Football.London, the striker explained what he had done to try and get a move:
“To be honest, I saw myself playing elsewhere. I had six tough months, which is why I wanted a change of scene to get back to playing and enjoying myself on the pitch, so I tried to leave in January.
“I did everything I could, but Chelsea didn’t want to let me leave because the condition in place was that they had to bring in a replacement. On 31 January, I still hoped that I would leave. I was very disappointed, but I’d say that by the following morning, I’d put that behind me.”
He certainly did. He never complained or sulked, and by the time the season was paused he was scoring goals and playing a key role for us up top.
So luckily for us, despite “trying everything”, nothing actually worked.