Olivier Giroud says Joel Campbell could be very important to Arsenal after the forward scored the opening goal in Saturday’s 3-1 win over Sunderland.
The Costa Rica forward doubled his tally for the season when he slotted home Mesut Ozil’s pass in the 3-1 victory which took the Gunners up to second in the Premier League.
Campbell has spent plenty of time out on loan since joining Arsenal in 2011 but manager Arsene Wenger has already declared the 23-year-old is very much part of the first-team picture at Emirates Stadium, especially with the injuries to Santi Cazorla, Alexis Sanchez and Francos Coquelin.
Saturday’s goal may have only been his second of the campaign but Campbell has impressed on the flanks while the likes of Theo Walcott, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Aaron Ramsey and now Sanchez have been out injured.
And Giroud, who scored an own goal to bring Sunderland level before tucking away a smart header in the second-half, is pleased to see his team-mate taking his chance.
“I’m happy for him because he has the opportunity to show his talent,” he told Arsenal Player.
“He’s a top guy who is very generous on the pitch because he never gives up. It’s not always been easy for him but I always used to speak with him, encourage him and when he’s playing like that he’s very important for us. Hopefully we’re going to see more of him in that form.”
Giroud’s 10th goal of the season sees him move clear as Arsenal’s top goalscorer and, after Aaron Ramsey’s injury-time goal added a third for the Gunners, the France striker admitted the somewhat scrappy victory was crucial.
“I was frustrated but now I’m very pleased to score the second goal and help the team win the game,” he added. “We needed this win and it was not very easy, not everything was perfect, but this win will relieve us.”