Arsene Wenger has laughed off Sam Allardyce’s suggestion that Olivier Giroud’s wife blocked a move to Everton last summer, and confirmed that the striker will be sidelined until mid-January with a hamstring problem.
Giroud said earlier this season that he was “very close” to joining Everton before deciding to stay with the Gunners, where he has been a back-up to new signing Alexandre Lacazette.
At his news conference on Wednesday, Wenger dismissed comments made by new Everton boss Allardyce that it was Giroud’s wife who had decided against the move.
“No, I don’t think so,” Wenger said. “He could have joined Everton and stayed basically in London. I don’t think that was the problem.”
Allardyce made the comments at his own news conference this week, when asked if he thought a deal for Giroud could be made in January.
“I wouldn’t have thought so because he refused to come last time,” Allardyce said. “He doesn’t want to move north of London, I don’t think. Or his wife doesn’t. It is very important to the wives you know. Normally they are the bosses, I say that with experience.”
Wenger will have to do without both Giroud and defender Nacho Monreal in the coming weeks after confirming they both face a spell on the sidelines. Giroud came off with a hamstring problem in the Carabao Cup win over West Ham and Wenger said he doesn’t expect the Frenchman back for another three weeks.
Monreal will also be out for the next three Premier League matches, including the crucial home game against Chelsea on Jan. 3.