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English Premiership

Giroud inspired by striker rumours

GIROUD-BOROArsenal forward Olivier Giroud says that he was inspired by transfer speculation linking the club with other strikers.

The Frenchman scored in Arsenal’s recent win over Crystal Palace to take his league tally to eight and also grabbed a brace to knock Middlesborough out of the FA Cup.

Despite his improved form in recent weeks, the former Montpellier forward has seen the English press linking the Gunners with other strikers, and he took offense.

“When people are talking about a player to come and take your place, you take it personally because it’s your position,” he told L’Equipe.

“I hear people say, ‘they have Giroud and Welbeck but they need a world class striker.’ Meaning, us, we’re not world-class forwards.

“It spurs you on. Recently, there was a buzz around Jackson Martinez. The coach has said good things about him, the player has said he would like to come.

“I learned that before the Middlesbrough game. It gave me added motivation. I was very happy to score those two goals.”

Although Giroud has less than half the 17 strikes of Premier League top scorers Diego Costa and Sergio Aguero, he is trying “to be more of a killer” like the Chelsea hitman.

“When I put my head in my hands after missing a chance it annoys the coaches a little,” he added. “Diego Costa doesn’t show any emotion. I am more emotional. So I have learned to control my emotions.”

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The Gunners face Arsene Wenger’s former side, Monaco, in the Champions League on Wednesday before taking on Everton on Sunday, both at the Emirates Stadium.

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