Olivier Giroud Hints He Will Be Rested for Arsenal vs. Chelsea Cup Tie

Christopher AtkinsContributor IOctober 24, 2013

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 22:  Olivier Giroud of Arsenal looks on during the UEFA Champions League Group F match between Arsenal and  Borussia Dortmund at Emirates Stadium on October 22, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud has hinted that he will not start in next week's Capital One Cup tie with Chelsea, amid concerns over the Gunners' lack of backup striking options.

The Frenchman has been in fine form this campaign, scoring six goals and providing four assists per Whoscored, but has been required to start every match in the league and Champions League thus far.

Giroud, though, insists he is not worried by the workload and told the Guardian's David Hytner:

Maybe I will have some rest next week, for the Capital One Cup … I will speak to the boss but I am used to playing a lot of games and I feel good with my body so, touch wood, no injuries.

The implication, then, would be that 25-year-old Dane Nicklas Bendtner will be handed another opportunity against the Blues, having not scored a goal at club level since April 2012, per Soccerway.

The Capital One Cup is the least of Arsenal's priorities at present. 

The priority has to be the league, regardless of whether or not the cup represents a good opportunity to end what is now an eight-year trophy drought.

Signing players like Mesut Ozil is fantastic for the club, but the German expects Champions League football every year—regardless of performances in cup competitions.

That can only be achieved through a top-four league position, and while Arsenal have started the season excellently, the next couple of months will see them face nearly all of their major rivals—with little backup for Giroud.

For Bendtner, it may well be a final opportunity to impress.

His current form is woeful, and it is already expected that he will depart in the near future, having come close to a departure in September per Goal.com.

Should he fail against Chelsea, it is unlikely he would be handed another starting berth ahead of the January transfer window—unless misfortune should strike Giroud.

The Frenchman has, over the space of a couple of months, made himself essential to Wenger's side and deserves credit for his efforts.

After a rocky first campaign in England, he has been sensational in leading the line for Arsenal this campaign, finally recapturing the form that saw him fire Montpellier to title success in Ligue 1 just over 12 months ago.