Giroud: Morata competition will help Chelsea

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The Frenchman insists that his battle for supremacy with the Spanish striker will help the Blues win trophies this season

Olivier Giroud believes that the competition between him and Alvaro Morata will help Chelsea fight for silverware in the coming months.

The veteran striker, 31, made his first start of the 2018-19 Premier League campaign on Saturday against Cardiff City and impressed leading the line in a 4-1 victory.

The France international, who became a World Cup winner this summer, provided two assists and was heavily involved in the team's build-up play throughout as the Blues secured their fifth successive win.

New manager Maurizio Sarri had used Morata up front during the opening four matches of the new season, but the 25-year-old only managed to find the net once as his difficult spell in England continues.

The Spaniard was heavily criticised last term for lacking a clinical edge in front of goal and has once again struggled to make his mark at Stamford Bridge so far this year.

However, according to Giroud, his colleague still has a big part to play for Chelsea, with both men vying for a starting spot in Sarri's line-up, as he told reporters on Monday: "It has always been a fair competition between us and we will both try to step up to help the team reach our target.

“I didn’t play at the beginning of the season because I came back late from the World Cup. I had to be patient, I had to reach a decent physical level. 

“The coach said he wouldn’t make many changes until the end of August. He was clear about that. Alvaro did well at the start, he did all the pre-season. It was fair he started the season. 

“I’m happy to have a team-mate like that, who pushes me to do better. It’s positive for both of us. I want to play as many games as I can and try to be as efficient as I can for the team.”

The Blues boss acknowledged the fact that the Frenchman made a huge impact against Cardiff, but suggested that he will swap the two frontmen around regularly.

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"On Saturday Oliver played very well," praised Sarri on Chelsea's official website. "Without scoring but he was very useful for his team-mates.

"In the last two weeks I have seen four matches of Cardiff and four matches of PAOK Salonika [Chelsea's next opponents] and I thought Giroud was more suitable for the Cardiff match and Morata for the other. So I don’t know who will be the striker of the future but I think both because we have to play 60 matches. In characteristics they are different and it depends on the kind of match."

Chelsea kick off their Europa League campaign on Thursday against PAOK Athens, before their next Premier League outing against West Ham at the London Stadium on Sunday.

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