'Champion': Sporting director hails 'great' Chelsea player before he officially leaves the Blues

Paolo Maldini lavished praise on Olivier Giroud shortly before his move from Chelsea to AC Milan was made official.

Speaking to DAZN (as transcribed by TuttoSport), Maldini spoke about Giroud’s imminent arrival in Milan.

The French forward had been heavily linked with a move to Serie A for some time, but the deal seems like it’s finally almost over the line.

Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images

This will end a three-year relationship with Chelsea after he was signed from Arsenal in 2018 for a modest £18m (Sky Sports).  


He was a double FA Cup winner whilst wearing blue, plus a Champions League and Europa League victor.

His short, but sweet legacy, will live on within the Stamford Bridge walls, even if that memory began to fade somewhat last season.

Photo by Chris Lee – Chelsea FC/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Giroud started just eight Premier League games in 2020/21, the last of which in February.

With fire left in the 34-year-old’s belly, he searched for another challenge and Milan welcomed him with open arms.

“Olivier is a champion; he’s done great things with France and Chelsea,” said Maldini, the club’s sporting director.

Photo by Vincenzo Lombardo/Getty Images

“He is a very reliable player and that’s what we are looking for, as we have the youngest squad in Serie A, so we need some with more experience.”

Maldini and his hierarchy chums have already raided Chelsea once this transfer window.

They managed to secure Fikayo Tomori on a permanent basis, following his highly profitable loan-move in the previous campaign.

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Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.