While Olivier Giroud’s brace against Luxembourg took France three points closer to the 2018 World Cup in Russia, it also took the striker one step closer to his own national team target.
With 23 goals for Les Bleus, Giroud is now his country’s 10th-highest scorer of all time but he is not prepared to settle for that.
“It’s always nice to be the 10th player in France’s history to score [that many goals],” he told Arsenal Player. “I’ve scored 23 goals but I want to score more for my national team. I don’t want to stop there. It’s obviously a great feeling and hopefully some more will come.
“My target is to reach Jean-Pierre Papin. It will be an amazing achievement for me so that’s why I don’t want to stop. He scored very nice goals and was one of my favourite strikers when I was young. At the end of my career, if I can say that I scored as many goals as him, I will be very proud.
“I always try to give everything for my country and I’m very proud to play for France. I’ve shown that I’m strong enough mentally to face the criticism and like [Didier Deschamps] said, you have to deal with that.
“You’re always the first person people point to if the team don’t score, but the thing is that I score and I’m doing well with the team. We have a good generation and I think we have a few very good young players who will be very important for France in the future, so we are confident for the rest of the World Cup qualifiers. We want to win it.”
Copyright 2020 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source.