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Giroud - Competition has made me better

By Chris Harris

Olivier Giroud says the battle for Arsenal's centre-forward position has helped him improve his game.

The France striker has an impressive haul of 58 goals in 105 starts for the Gunners but he faces stiff competition for a starting role with Theo Walcott, Danny Welbeck and Alexis all comfortable playing through the middle.

"You have to deal with that [competition] all the time and it helped me be a better player," said Giroud, speaking at the PUMA away kit launch in Singapore. "People are always talking about different players. I focus on myself and try to improve my game. As a team we improve and I am happy with that.

"It would be nice to score at least 15 or 20 goals. My best record is 16 in the Premier League and I want to beat that"

"I don’t have a precise target [for the new season] but I always want to improve, so I want to score more goals than last year. It would be nice to score at least 15 or 20 goals. My best record is 16 in the Premier League and I want to beat that.

"I have a team target to win one more trophy, a fourth one since I arrived here. I really want to win one more and why not the league this year?"

Giroud has developed into one of European football's leading strikers and feels he has stepped up to a new level since arriving at Emirates Stadium in 2012.

"For sure I have improved my technique with my feet," he said. "Technically it’s always nice to learn from the fantastic team-mates around me.

"In this way I improve myself, and in how to use my body as well. It’s always physically a big intensity in England. I think I improved physically, technically and I’m a better team-mate as well. Arsenal is not about one player, it’s a team effort. I try to link the play and set up the game.

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"I am passionate, I love football and I am thankful to do this job every day," he added. "The main thing is to give everything on the pitch and have no regrets because a career goes so fast.

"You always learn but you must always keep the human part of you in the group. I try to be a good team-mate and a good guy as well."

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