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Chelsea exercises option on Spurs target Olivier Giroud, extends contract to 2021

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This doesn’t mean he won’t leave Chelsea, but it means it won’t be for free.

Chelsea FC v Everton FC - Premier League Photo by Stephanie Meek - CameraSport via Getty Images

Depending on what you believe, Tottenham Hotspur were very interested in signing current Chelsea striker and former Arsenal man Olivier Giroud in this past January’s transfer window, as an emergency target man to cover for the injured Harry Kane. That obviously didn’t happen, but Spurs have apparently maintained their interest in signing Giroud as a free agent this summer, as his contract was set to expire in June.

Well, never mind. According to Gianluca Di Marzio, Chelsea have exercised an option in Giroud’s contract to keep him for another year through the 2020-21 season.

These kinds of contract options are common these days — Daniel Levy loves to put them in Spurs contracts, and Tottenham has exercised them on a number of players over the past few years including most notably Toby Alderweireld. Unfortunately for Spurs, it means that they now can’t just convince Giroud to come to Tottenham with an attractive wage package — they have to actively deal with Chelsea. Considering the history between these two clubs, that sure doesn’t seem very likely.

That doesn’t necessarily mean that Giroud will still be a Chelsea player next year — Di Marzio also notes that Inter Milan maintain a keen interest in signing him — but it does mean that he won’t go for free, and that was the main appeal of bringing in a player like Giroud. He’s a veteran, has Old Man Game™, and wouldn’t cost anything, and those are all pretty appealing in a Harry Kane backup/rotation option.

Well, crap.