Olivier Giroud has paid tribute to his new manager, Antonio Conte, after joining Chelsea from Arsenal on deadline day. The France international, who will wear the No.18 shirt at Stamford Bridge, is believed to have cost the reigning Premier League champions around £18million.
Giroud scored over 100 goals in 253 appearances in over five years at Arsenal and won three FA Cups with the Gunners. He was in the stands as Chelsea were beaten 3-0 by Bournemouth on Wednesday evening.
Upon joining Chelsea, Giroud was asked what he likes about Conte – a manager who won the Premier League title in his first season in England – and said: ‘I don’t know him very well obviously but I like the positive energy he brings to the pitch.
‘He’s always supporting his players, talking to them. Communication is massive in football, for me the relationship with the coach is very important.
‘Tactically he is obviously very good because he’s Italian – Chelsea is a strong team defensively and quite efficient up front with great players. I think I will enjoy it.’
Giroud refused to set himself a goals target for his time at Chelsea but insisted he intends to help the team in any way he can.
‘I’m not going to tell you a number of goals for the moment,’ he told Chelsea’s official website. ‘But I’m looking forward to playing, I will do my best to help the team win games – that’s it.’
Having played against Chelsea on numerous occasions over the past few years, Giroud is well-accustomed to the squad at Stamford Bridge. He also shares a dressing room with a number of his new team-mates when playing for France.