Pundit claims Lampard may force Inter-linked Chelsea star to stay

A “massively important” Olivier Giroud may be forced to honour his contract at Chelsea, according to former Blues star Joe Cole.

A back-up role at Stamford Bridge has forced the France star to consider an exit in January ahead of next summer Euros.

The 34-year-old is currently contracted until the summer of 2021 but wants regular game time.

Tammy Abraham and Timo Werner are currently considered as better options for Lampard in attack. Giroud offers a more physical presence in attack, but at the moment that is off the bench.

However, despite looking for a move away – with Inter Milan the latest club to be linked – Cole thinks Giroud could stay.

The former Blues playmaker told talkSPORT: “I think Giroud has been different class. He is a massively important part of the squad.

“Frank would love to keep him and Chelsea are in a position where if they don’t want him to go he doesn’t have to go as he signed a contract.

“He’ll have a big part to play in what will be a successful year for Chelsea.”

Werner and Abraham have both impressed for Lampard’s men in recent weeks, making life tough for Giroud.

Cole added: “Tammy’s been excellent. He offers something different to the other guys.

“Having competition for places is important. He won’t be the first striker to miss a few chances.”

Abraham has scored five goals this season, while Werner has eight as the Blues sit third in the table.

Chelsea target Real stalwart

Chelsea could take advantage of Raphael Varane’s contract situation at Real Madrid, according to a report.

Varane has been one of the best defenders in the world over the past few years, with the high point of his career being winning the World Cup with France in 2018.

However, his fortunes since then have not been as kind. Despite starting nine out of 10 league games for Madrid so far this season, he has struggled to display his best form.

Luka Modric, Raphael Varane, Sergio Ramos

Even so, he remains one of the best in the business when at the top of his game. Therefore, he would still be an attractive proposition for many sides.

Varane could become available in the coming months. His contract at Madrid expires in 2022, with no sign yet of an impending renewal.

Hence, the La Liga champions may have to sell him soon to avoid losing him for free. That will undoubtedly put many top clubs on alert. Read more…