Chelsea could let Olivier Giroud leave the club in the coming January transfer window after the striker quoted the French publication Telefoot (via Sky Sports ) about his playing time.
Giroud joined Stamford Bridge from London rival Arsenal in January 2018. Since then he has played 95 games for the Blues – mostly from the bench – and scored 29 goals in the process.
The Frenchman hit form at the right time last season, finding the net in eight of Chelsea's last twelve league games as he snuck a spot in the Champions League.
The striker hoped that this would be enough to secure regular time for the new season. This did not happen, however, and Giroud is now limiting himself to substitute cameos who have only played 36 minutes in the Premier League so far this season.
The 34-year-old commented on his current situation in south-west London and referred to it as such "over". Speaking to Telefoot, Giroud said: “Concern is a big word, but it is about something. It's true that I felt like I still played a role in this team, especially after finishing last season very well.
“At the beginning of the campaign I thought I could still help the team, but my playing time has dropped significantly so that has to change or I have to make a decision. “
The current contract of the former Montpellier man runs until the end of the 2020/21 season. Given his age and the presence of much younger options at the club, it is likely that Chelsea will no longer renew his contract. Even so, manager Frank Lampard has insisted that the world champion is important to his plans.
Before the Champions League game against Rennes on Tuesday, Lampard stated (on The Metro ): “I have plans to have Oli (Giroud), who is very important in our squad. He was a big part of our squad last year, I think he played a lot of games and made a lot of starts last year.
“He's a big member of the squad for me and I know he'll be important. We want Oli to be and stay here because that's how he plays. “
However, Lampard also admitted that he would not stand in the way if the Frenchman wanted to leave.
“I have a very good relationship with Oli and if he ever had the feeling that things would go differently, I would like to have this conversation with him, but I do wants him to stay here and us I will be very open both ways if that ever changes. Right now he's very important to me.
"This January we will cross that bridge when it comes down to it, but my first thought must always be the strength of our squad."
Despite his lack of playing time At club level, Giroud proves that he is still on the international stage has a lot to offer. In his last international break, the striker beat Sweden in the UEFA Nations League, scoring just seven goals less than Thierry Henry's record for the French national team.