According to ESPN, Laurent Koscielny has claimed that his Arsenal and France international colleague Olivier Giroud is suffering from fatigue; after a terrific start to his new season with the club, the striker has hit a bit of a rough patch after having played non-stop without any rest.
Arsene Wenger will be concerned by his side’s inability to score against Manchester United at the weekend. And even though the match was played at Old Trafford, which gives United the upper hand in terms of the crowd support, Wenger will be worried about the consistency of his strikers after failing to score despite the availability of multiple attacking options. Nicklas Bendtner, who was given the option of leaving the club in the summer, has stayed with the club reluctantly, and the Dane is paying the price for not securing an early move by sitting on the bench as an impact player when Giroud gets tired. United’s win means the gap between them and Arsenal at the top is down to 5 points. Also, both sides benefited from the fact that Manchester City lost to Sunderland at the Stadium of Light. Liverpool continued their impressive form with a win at home, while Chelsea continued to struggle at the top of the pack with a poor 2-2 draw against West Bromwich Albion at Stamford Bridge.
The Gunners secured the signing of Mesut Ozil in the summer for a fee of £42.4 million, but could not bring in an additional star striker to help Giroud through the season. And Wenger is feeling the effect of that decision. The club were close to bringing one of Karim Benzema, Gonzalo Higuain and Stevan Jovetic through the door before they were snatched by rival clubs for big fees.
Arsenal enter the two week international break with a sigh of relief, as it finally gives the squad a break from the intensity of the Barclays Premier League. However, players will be traveling with their respective international squads, leaving another fortnight for Wenger to pray for an injury-free week. They return from the break with a home game against Southampton.
Koscielny said, ““It’s true that he’s not scoring but he is setting them up, like he did against Dortmund, but he’s also playing game after game and hasn’t had a rest, so maybe he’s feeling a bit of fatigue.”
“He’s very important for us — strong and always answers the call on the pitch. If you look at the games, he weighs enormously on the opposition’s defence. All the balls he wins are in the air with his back to goal. He works very hard up front.”