Arsenal continue to be linked with a big-money move for Karim Benzema, but it is Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott who are battling over the starting position in attack at the moment.
Having been preferred to his French counterpart in both the FA Cup Final and the Community Shield, it came as a surprise to see Walcott relegated to the bench against West Ham last Sunday.
It is easy to understand why Arsene Wenger opted for the former Montpellier man, however, when you consider just how much better the Gunners were with him than without him in the Premier League last season:
|POS: FWD||AGE: 28Y 10M|
|HEIGHT: 6FT 4IN||WEIGHT: 13ST 12LB|
|PL | ARS | 14/15||14/15 14/15 | ARS | PL|
The French international featured in 27 top-flight matches in 2014/15, 21 from the start, helping himself to a decent return of 14 goals.
Arsenal triumphed in 67% of the contests in which he played a part, scoring at a rate of two goals per game from their 11.4 attempts.
Despite managing 11.8 shots when he was missing, the North London outfit only registered 1.5 goals per game, whilst their win percentage dropped alarmingly to a mere 36%.
Arsenal remain capable of losing when Olivier Giroud takes to the pitch, as they showed against West Ham, but they tend to do much better when he is involved.
It is therefore good news for their immediate prospects that the club were able to confirm earlier this week that the 28-year-old did not suffer a concussion when clashing heads with James Tomkins last Sunday.
The Gunners love playing Crystal Palace, beating them five times in a row recently, with Giroud on target on both of his previous visits to Selhurst Park.
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