Arsenal legend Thierry Henry thinks Olivier Giroud can help lead the Gunners to the Premier League title — by being used as a super sub.
Giroud, 30, faces a struggle to regain his starting spot after seeing Alexis Sanchez make the centre-forward role his own in the first months of the season.
However, the France international made a huge impact as a substitute in Saturday’s 4-1 win at Sunderland, scoring two goals with his first two touches after coming on with the score at 1-1.
And Henry — who previously claimed Arsenal could not win the title with Giroud as their main striker — said that playing the former Montpellier man from off the bench should be used as a blueprint for success by Gunners boss Arsene Wenger.
“He can be a plan B,” Henry told Sky Sports. “I don’t know if he’s going to be happy coming off the bench but I think you win a title like that.”
Henry, Arsenal’s record scorer who helped lead the club to two Premier League titles, pointed out that many championship-winning sides have had a prominent super sub, such as like Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Teddy Sheringham at Manchester United, Edin Dzeko at Manchester City and Kanu and Sylvain Wiltord at Arsenal.
“So can he [Giroud] accept to do that?” Henry said. “We know the boss, Arsene Wenger, now likes to play with Alexis Sanchez inside and he came on and did the job [against Sunderland] and he did it very well.”
Giroud is in line for his first start of the season on Tuesday at Ludogorets Razgrad in the Champions League, and insisted on Monday that he and Sanchez can coexist in the same team.
“In every big club you have a lot of good strikers with different qualities,” Giroud said. “We can play together, he can play up front and I can as well. I’m just concentrating on what I have to do on the pitch and my time will come.”
Henry agreed that having two different types of player to choose from will help Wenger during the season.
“He [Giroud] is amazing in the air and that gives you another option,” Henry said. “If you can have Sanchez in the middle and him coming off the bench or sometimes maybe you start him and Sanchez goes back outside, or Sanchez goes around him, but that’s more difficult because you’re playing Mesut Ozil. I think you have a different option but that’s great for the boss.”