Arsene Wenger's eye for talent in his home country across the English channel is unparalleled, with the veteran manager building multiple Arsenal squads around imports from France. But the disastrous signing of Marouane Chamakh from Bordeaux in 2010 has led to scepticism creeping into pundits and fans when Wenger brings in a striker from his country. Olivier Giroud thus had a mountain to climb from the moment he arrived at the Emirates from Montpellier earlier this summer, notwithstanding the responsibility of replacing a certain Robin van Persie.
The nervous start made by Giroud only added to the negative vibes surrounding his Arsenal career as he seemed to be overawed by the step up from Ligue 1 to the Premier League. He was guilty of a few horrible misses in his first few games, which forced Wenger to move Gervinho into a central role.