Giroud settles seven-goal thriller for Arsenal

Wenger Shakespeare

Wenger Shakespeare

Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud staked a claim for a starting place with the victor in a thrilling season-opening 4-3 victory over Leicester City in the Premier League on Friday.

The 28-year-old watched from the stands as Olivier Giroud's late header earned the Gunners three points.

Jamie Vardy - who has now scored five goals against the Gunners in his last six appearances - grabbed his first of the night on the half-hour mark to give the Foxes the lead, but Arsenal equalised on the stroke of half-time through Danny Welbeck.

But it was not to be.

Olivier Giroud came off the bench to head a late victor after Aaron Ramsey had brought Arsenal level at 3-3 following a Jamie Vardy double for the visitors.

"Giroud? He's fantastic", Wenger said of the France worldwide, who usually started on the bench last season and had been linked with a move away from The Emirates.

"I don't know whether it was a lack of concentration or just a lack of game management in the last ten minutes, but you then concede again from a set play in terms of being overpowered". In the end he chose to stay and it was one of the great days of the recent weeks for me. I know how important he is not only as a player but also in the group he has a big weight. "He has a big weight in this squad and it was a relief for me that he made a decision to stay".

Pushed on whether he thought Giroud could leave before the transfer window closes on August 31, Wenger was adamant. "It's a determined no". Just a few minutes later, he would net the goal that would secure the win for Arsenal to start the season.

"It was good. Obviously I'm still getting used to the English game, the positives and negatives, shall we say, but I'm learning. So overall I think he adapts slowly to the way we want to play and is a collective player and an intelligent player as well".

"If you look at the third goal, I'm a bit disappointed with the handball leading up to it but that aside, once you get the corner, you have to defend it better".