Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud has admitted that he was very close to joining Everton this summer, before ultimately choosing to stay at the Emirates.
The Frenchman’s future was one of the big stories of the summer transfer window following the arrival of club record signing Alexandre Lacazette, and the departure of Romelu Lukaku from Goodison Park.
Lacazette’s arrival at the Emirates led to many speculating that Giroud would choose to leave the Gunners in order to gain regular first team football this season ahead of next summer’s World Cup where he faces intense competition in the French national team. Along with his new team mate Lacazette, Giroud is also battling against the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Karin Benzema and Anthony Martial to be one of his country’s main strikers at next summer’s tournament in Russia.
He has now revealed that he was ‘very close’ to joining Everton, but does not regret his decision to stay at Arsenal.
He told Canal Football Club:
“I had the opportunity to leave. I was very close to another English club – Everton, but I think I made the best choice.”
He was also linked with a move back to Ligue 1, with Lyon and Marseille thought to be interested. Giiroud added:
“I have a lot of respect for Marseille, I was a fan for years.
“I also have a lot of respect for Lyon, who were also interested at one time, I didn’t want to return to France.
“I’m happy in England, it’s nothing against those clubs but a return to France is possible one day.”
As for Everton, they could have done with the goalscoring exploits of Giroud following their early season woes. The Toffees are hovering just above the relegation zone after picking up just seven points in as many games, with Ronald Koeman battling to save his job.