During his five years with us, Olivier Giroud has become a key figure - both on and off the pitch.
The France international is one of the longest-serving members of our squad, and became the 19th player to score 100 Arsenal goals in Thursday’s Europa League win at BATE Borisov.
Per Mertesacker, speaking in Sunday’s matchday programme, outlined the characteristics that have enabled our No 12 to flourish in north London.
“He’s so valuable to our squad and he’s earned the respect of everyone by behaving properly, as a member of this team,” Mertesacker said. “The ultimate outcome is that he scores lots of goals, but when he wasn’t playing, he’s never thought about giving up or taking another road.
“He’s always been so engaged and as he says himself, his run isn’t over. Oli is an Arsenal man and he feels deeply that he can contribute to the success of this team.
“He’s absolutely right. Scoring 100 goals in five years shows that. I cannot praise his approach and his attitude enough.
“Oli is the type of leader you need in a team. He has a huge influence and that makes him so valuable. That’s why I appreciate his character.
“He’s such a good example for young players because regardless of if he plays or not, he always brings his energy. Look at the impact he has when he comes off the bench.
“I want everyone to be a leader in this team, to be positive and a good example for the next generation.”
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