August 16, 2017
Wenger relieved Giroud stayed, produced opening-day victory

Wenger relieved Giroud stayed, produced opening-day victory

- in Soccer

Published 8:41 p.m. ET Aug. 11, 2017

LONDON (AP) — Arsene Wenger is relieved Olivier Giroud didn’t take him up on the offer to leave Arsenal.

Ever since France striker Alexandre Lacazette joined in July for a club-record 60 million euros ($68 million), the future of compatriot Giroud has been in doubt.

But after deciding to stick it out for a sixth season at Arsenal, Giroud was the north London club’s match-winner on the opening day of the new Premier League campaign after coming off the bench.

While Lacazette netted the opener after two minutes against Leicester on Friday, a collapse left Arsenal trailing with seven minutes remaining. An equalizer by Aaron Ramsey was followed by a header from fellow substitute Giroud sealing a 4-3 victory over the 2016 champions.

“It’s fantastic,” Wenger said. “I must tell you I opened the door for him at some stage (to leave) because it’s…

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