I stayed to help Arsenal to more trophy success, says Giroud
Olivier Giroud insists his "story is not over" at Arsenal, but revealed he came close to leaving the club during the summer .The France international has come off the bench in all the Gunners' games so far this season having fallen behind club-record signing and fellow Frenchman Alexandre Lacazette in the pecking order.
Danny Welbeck also seems to have surpassed Giroud in manager Arsene Wenger's thinking, but the 30-year-old striker is likely to get a chance to impress in tonight's Europa League clash against German side Cologne.
Wenger will make a raft of changes as Arsenal play in the competition for the first time in 17 years.
Giroud admits that he nearly quit over the summer having been linked with the likes of Everton and West Ham.
Asked how close he came to leaving Arsenal, Giroud said: "I was close to leaving the club because I said that I wanted to play.
"But after a big reflection with everybody around me, I decided I wanted to stay at Arsenal and I thought the story was not finished here.
"I still want to improve and win more trophies for the club."
Wenger has always maintained his desire to keep Giroud - who has 99 goals for the club - at Arsenal and was full of praise for the striker.
He said: "I have said many times that his contribution has been huge.
"He has had a great evolution here and overall his contribution has been tremendous, and I think he has shown a very loyal spirit and has a high respect from everybody inside the club, as well as from our fans."
- Arsenal v Cologne, Europa League Group H: The Emirates, Tonight, 8.05pm