Olivier Giroud has been warned he must play more regularly – or risk losing his place in the France squad for the Euros.
Chelsea veteran Giroud, 34, is proving that age is no barrier as he has been in red-hot form in the Champions League as his four goal haul in Sevilla made it five goals in his last two European games.
But Giroud admitted that France boss Didier Deschamps has already told him that unless he continues to play then he might have to consider leaving in January.
World Cup winner Giroud has made it clear that he is desperate to stay at Chelsea and “win trophies” but must start to play more regularly after his goalscoring run in Europe.
Giroud, who has yet to start in the Premier League, said: “I had a conversation with Didier Deschamps and obviously he said if the situation stayed like that, you will have to take a decision in January.
“But I am pretty sure that I can grab some more game-time and stay at Chelsea because that is what I want. I want to win trophies with Chelsea.
“So basically that’s it.
“But you never know in football – everything is going very fast. But now I am very happy.
“I am a happy man and I am proud to be a Chelsea player.
“I think if I play more than in the beginning of the season, I think I have a good chance to be fit, to be ready for the Euros.”
Giroud has now scored 17 goals in Europe, more than any other Chelsea player since he arrived at the club in 2018 while Frank Lampard’s men are unbeaten in 15 games in all competitions.
It was also a night of records. Giroud was the first player since Peter Osgood in 1971 to score four goals in a game. The second to score four for an English team after Ruud van Nistelrooy in 2004. And the second Frenchman after Bafetimbi Gomis got four for Lyon in 2011.
But, more importantly, it was also vindication for a player who has always defied his critics and detractors throughout his career.
Giroud was prolific for Arsenal despite being told he could not score against top level opponents, won the World Cup with France in 2018 and has now become crucial for Chelsea as he enjoys a career renaissance at Stamford Bridge.
Giroud said: “People used to say I always built myself, all through my career, on adversity.
“But if I didn’t play much so far [this season], you have to accept it unfortunately and you have to work hard at training to show the gaffer that you are ready and give him the confidence back when he asks you to play. I just tried to do that.
“Obviously I would like to play more, but the best answer when you are not playing much is not being sad or not being in a good mood – it’s always being positive.
“I try to do that every single day. I always believe in my qualities and always keep calm and confident. I know what I am capable of doing. Sometimes I need to be more patient, but it’s always nice to show it on the pitch when you have the opportunity.”
Giroud also says that he feels nearly TEN YEARS younger and in the best form of his career.
He added: “I feel very good physically. I try to keep in good shape and work hard at training every single day and also to show a good example to the youngsters. I believe it’s not about your age.
“To keep playing football after 30 you need to keep the faith, keep believing that you can always improve. It’s only a psychological barrier. It’s just psychological.
“The motivation is still here, the body is answering well. So yeah, I feel like I am 25 to be honest with you.”
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