Chelsea manager Frank Lampard has said striker Olivier Giroud won’t leave Stamford Bridge on transfer deadline day, despite rumours the Frenchman was set to head for the exit.
Lampard, 41, spoke at a press conference on Friday and praised Giroud for his professionalism while speculation spiraled regarding his future, ruling out any last-minute deals: "He has been incredible as a player and a man during this time. Will he leave? No. He trained today. No ins and no outs.”
He reiterated his and the club’s belief that Giroud would leave as long as an offer worked for all parties, lauding the 33-year-old veteran as “impeccable in that period.” Lampard also suggested Giroud would only be allowed to go if the club could find a forward replacement.
The Frenchman hasn’t featured in Chelsea’s last nine Premier League matchday squads in succession, having played just 91 minutes of top-flight football under Lampard since August 25.
Sky Sports reported on Friday that Lazio sporting director Igli Tare was travelling to London in the hopes of sealing a move for Giroud. Tottenham Hotspur were also said to be interested following Harry Kane’s recent injury.
Chelsea are poised to end the January transfer window with no new faces. That’s despite the west Londoners once again being permitted to sign players after their transfer suspension was halved in early December, per the Independent’s Tom Kershaw. The list of players rumoured to be heading to Stamford Bridge ballooned as a result, with Moussa Dembélé of Lyon, Boubakary Soumare of Lille, and Timo Werner of RB Leipzig all mentioned as high-profile targets.
It seems likely Tammy Abraham will continue to lead the Blues line with Michy Batshuayi and 2018 World Cup-winner Giroud as his deputies for the remainder of the season. Abraham is still in the midst of contract talks, which Chelsea will surely hope to resolve swiftly now that no understudies have arrived.