Chelsea set asking price for Olivier Giroud as talks with Inter Milan begin for out-of-contract forward
Chelsea have opened negotiations with Italian side Inter Milan for striker Olivier Giroud, with the Frenchman coming to the end of his contract with the Blues.
The 33-year-old is into the final year of his current deal at Chelsea, and it looks likely that Giroud will leave West London by the end of next summer.
Giroud has been forced to play a supporting role under Frank Lampard this season, following Tammy Abraham's rapid rise to glory in the Premier League. Whilst Michy Batshuayi appears to be Lampard's second choice, with the Belgian coming off of the bench several times this season and making an impact.
Featuring six times this season, he has only netted once in 211 minutes of action - the only goal coming in the Super Cup defeat to Liverpool all the way back in August.
According to Nico Schira, former Chelsea boss Antonio Conte wants to take Olivier Giroud to Italy to bolster his attacking line alongside Romelu Lukaku.
But there is currently a stumbling block in the deal, with the Chelsea hierarchy holding out for a fee of €5-7 million in January, but Inter Milan don't want to pay a fee due to Giroud's expiring contract.
The veteran forward has become increasingly frustrated at Stamford Bridge this season, with Kurt Zouma confirming Giroud's frustrations of the lack of minutes under Frank Lampard.
"[Olivier] Giroud is frustrated, he wants to play more, like any other player and he wants to be on the pitch, but he is taking everything calmly. He is a professional, he works hard in training. I have a lot of respect for the player he is," Zouma said.
"As someone in the dressing room, he gives advice to Tammy Abraham and Michy Batshuayi. He wants the best for the team and that is why he is a good person."
He was back on the scoresheet for France after he netted in their win over Moldova during the week to send them top of their Euro 2020 qualifying group.
The end is near for Olivier Giroud's career at Chelsea. A matter of when, not if. January or next summer - Frank Lampard will be hoping he can keep hold of the forward until the end of the season.