Arsenal Transfer News: Olivier Giroud Justified in Calling for New Striker

Rory MarsdenFeatured ColumnistJune 11, 2014

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 17:  Olivier Giroud of Arsenal reacts during the FA Cup with Budweiser Final match between Arsenal and Hull City at Wembley Stadium on May 17, 2014 in London, England.  (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)
Paul Gilham/Getty Images

Olivier Giroud is expecting Arsene Wenger to bring in a new striker over the summer transfer window to compete with the Frenchman at Arsenal.

Giroud performed well for the Gunners last season—bagging 16 Premier League goals per BBC Sport—as Arsenal finished fourth in the English top flight.

However, the North London outfit's lack of depth up top was a key reason why Arsenal's early table-topping form dipped drastically by the end of the season.

Despite spending the most days at the Premier League's summit in 2013-14, per the competition's Twitter feed, Wenger's side ended up seven points back of eventual winners Manchester City.

Giroud believes that a new striker is key to bridging that gap and allowing Arsenal to genuinely compete for the title next season, per InfoSport+ via Sky Sports:

"I can tell you Arsenal will add a striker to the team," said the 27-year-old. "We need another striker. Great clubs have several good strikers, who compete with each other." 

With 21-year-old Yaya Sanogo currently the only real alternative striker to Giroud at Arsenal, Wenger must absolutely add a world-class goalscorer to his ranks over the summer.

ST GALLEN, SWITZERLAND - MARCH 05: Mario Mandzukic of Croatia prior the international friendly match between Switzerland and Croatia at the AFG Arena on March 5, 2014 in St Gallen, Switzerland.  (Photo by Marc Eich/Getty Images)
Marc Eich/Getty Images

Mario Mandzukic is a genuine possibility having asked to leave Bayern Munich, per ESPN FC, and the Croatian would be a quality addition to the Gunners' current squad.

In Pep Guardiola's 2013-14 Bundesliga-winning side he scored 18 goals and also netted three times in the Champions League, per

Opta note his terrific ability in the air, an asset that would add a new dimension to Arsenal's play and a different option when their primary plan does not work.

The 28-year-old is proven at the top level, he has two Bundesliga medals and a Champions League win to prove it.

His movement and physicality would be perfectly suited to the rigours of the Premier League and he seems the ideal strike candidate for Wenger to go in for.

Paulo Duarte/Associated Press

Alternatively, Porto's Jackson Martinez could be a fantastic buy for Arsenal, and interest from the Gunners has been reported by the player's agent, Peppino Tirri, per talkSPORT:  

"There are, instead, opportunities abroad - Arsenal and Valencia in particular are very interested in Jackson Martinez."

The 27-year-old Colombian has scored bags of goals for Porto since joining in 2012, 60 in 91 appearances to be exact, per Nick Lustig in the Daily Star.

In the absence of Radamael Falcao at the World Cup, Martinez could be the star of the show for Colombia, and Wenger would do well to watch him closely.

Athletic and powerful—as well as a fantastic finisher—Martinez would be a real force at the head of the Arsenal attack and would provide goals, which is what the Gunners need.

He is rated at around £30 million, and there is also the issue of whether he would be able to perform at Premier League level. Though Porto are a strong side, the Portuguese league is a level below the English top flight in quality terms.


However, if he proves his worth against top teams at the World Cup he should certainly be seen as a possibility for the Emirates hierarchy to consider.

For Arsenal to genuinely compete for the Premier League again, they need to find their new Robin van Persie, a striker who will consistently bring in 20 or more goals a season.  

There are plenty of options out there and Wenger must make sure to bring in world-class quality or else risk another fourth-place finish in the 2014-15 season.