Arsenal sign Giroud as Juventus give up on Robin Van Persie

Olivier Giroud

Giroud joins Gunners, as Didier Drogba plots Shanghai surprise... by joining Barcelona

BY Bill Mann LAST UPDATED AT 07:00 ON Tue 26 Jun 2012

ARSENAL have confirmed the signing of Olivier Giroud from Montpellier in a move that is sure to signal the exit of at least one other striker from the Emirates. The 25-year-old forward has signed in a £12m deal that was finalised on Monday evening.

Gunners will be hoping that the man to be replaced is hapless Moroccan Marouane Chamakh rather than Robin Van Persie. And there is good news on that front from the BBC, which reports: "Arsene Wenger intends to utilise Giroud in a front three alongside fellow new signing Lukas Podolski and Robin van Persie."

There is even better news from Talksport, which claims that one of Van Persie's main suitors Juventus has given up hope of signing the Dutchman. The Italians are now said to be "monitoring" Liverpool striker Luis Suarez instead. The Old Lady of Turin had hoped to take the Dutchman off Arsenal's hands but they now realise there is as much hope of that happening as of Ashley Young hitting the target. So instead Juventus have turned their attention to Suarez. Talksport claims that the reigning Italian champions will offer Liverpool £14.5m for the South American striker, while also throwing in Serbian winger Milos Krasic. The 27-year-old Krasic was apparently on Kenny Dalglish's radar before he got the chop in May, and it's not known if new Reds boss Brendan Rodgers likes the cut of the Serb's jib. 

Could the former Chelsea striker Didier Drogba be about to snub Shanghai Shenhua for Barcelona? According to the Daily Mail, Drogba is close to finalising the "astonishing transfer" just days after it was announced the 34-year-old Ivorian was taking up a lucrative contract in the Chinese Super League.

The Mail claims that Drogba will jet into Barcelona today to meet the club's board and discuss terms. On the question of his commitment to Shanghai Shenhua, the paper explains that there was a bizarre clause in the contract allowing Drogba to "leave at no cost to move to Barcelona only”.

Last week he said he was "looking forward to a new challenge" in China but it's believed he has found the advances of Barcelona impossible to resist.

In other news the Metro reports that Chelsea have concluded that while Biblical Moses might have come down from the mountain Victor Moses isn't going to come down from Wigan. The Blues had been chasing the Latics winger for a while, but have decided it's not worth the hassle after Wigan chairman Dave Whelan started playing hardball.

Instead the reigning European champions are eyeing up Andre Schurrle. The Bayer Leverkusen winger, currently with the German squad at Euro 2012, has been given the once over by Chelsea scouts and the Metro says the club are "considering testing the water with an £7 million bid”.

That won't be enough, apparently, with the German outfit rumoured to be holding out for around £15m. The 21-year-old Schurrle, first capped by his country in 2010, has also aroused interest at AC Milan and Bayern Munich.

Elsewhere and Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has rubbished suggestions that the club might be willing to offload left-back Aleksandar Kolarov this summer. The Serbian defender arrived at the Etihad in 2010 but, like an England midfielder, has struggled to make any impact.

Rumours emerged at the end of last season that the 26-year-old might be seeking an exit from the Sky Blues. But in an interview with Italian broadcaster Sky Sport 24, Mancini said: "Kolarov is a great left-back and I would like to keep him.”

Can City also keep hold of striker Edin Dzeko? According to German rag Bild, the Sky Blues might give the Bosnian frontman to Bayern Munich in return for Arjen Robben. The Dutchman has been unsettled at Bayern for a while now and after a lacklustre Euro 2012 Robben's future is on the line. "It is possible that Arjen is leaving Bayern,"Bild quotes Robben's father Hans as saying.
 
Robben, who enjoyed a spell at Chelsea a few seasons back, signed a new deal at Bayern last season but Bild believes the Dutchman wants to return to the Premier League. · 

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