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Olivier Giroud Hints at Chelsea Departure in January Due to Lack of Game Time

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistOctober 15, 2019

PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 14: Olivier Giroud of France during the UEFA Euro 2020 qualifier between France and Turkey at Stade de France on October 14, 2019 in Saint-Denis near Paris, France. (Photo by Jean Catuffe/Getty Images)
Jean Catuffe/Getty Images

Olivier Giroud has said he will have to make a decision about his future at Chelsea in January if he does not get more game time in the coming months. 

Under manager Frank Lampard in 2019-20, Giroud has been restricted to just one Premier League start, while Tammy Abraham has established himself as the Blues' first-choice No. 9 by netting eight goals in eight games.

Giroud came off the bench for France on Monday and scored in Les Bleus' 1-1 UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying draw with Turkey at the Stade de France.

He said after the match in Paris he is eager to fight for his place at Chelsea, but if he continues to be overlooked, he will take the same decision as he did when he opted to leave Arsenal in 2018, per Goal:

"I'm going to fight for my place in Chelsea. The coach knows it. And we will make the decision in January. If I want to leave Chelsea? Not necessarily. But if I need to make a choice. ... I have some beautiful years in front of me. I'm 33, I still have legs and a good healthy lifestyle and I feel good physically.

"I want to have fun and want to play more games. Chelsea is my priority, but if in the end I'm forced to make a choice, I will do it as when I left Arsenal. [Lampard] will almost certainly watch the matches. In any case, I am going back to Chelsea pumped up."

Despite his recent lack of game time at club level, Giroud continues to be a key player for the French national team. He has netted in three of France's last four games:

Squawka Football @Squawka

Olivier Giroud has now scored 38 goals for France, Thierry Henry (51) and Michel Platini (41) are the only men with more. Off the bench and to the rescue (again) 🇫🇷 https://t.co/61D3XSAeo7

Manager Didier Deschamps has hinted, though, that the striker's lack of minutes at Chelsea could impact his international opportunities, per the Press Association (h/t MailOnline):

"You know, Olivier suffers his situation. Before January, nothing will move. After, it will be up to him to see. I hope he will have more playing time. But we cannot take away his goals, his good performances. He scores, he makes others play well. He knows he is under pressure, but he always responds."

France are second in Group H of Euro 2020 qualifying after eight matches.

Their final two fixtures of the campaign next month are against already-eliminated Moldova at home and Albania away.

Both matches are eminently winnable for the world champions, who have only slipped up against Turkey in their eight qualifying matches so far.

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