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The Giroud of last year vs. the RVP of 08-09: Eerily Similar

In case you didn't see the infographic floating around, Gabriel Jones (@footygymjones) did some number-crunching, and found some pretty interesting numbers showing that Olivier Giroud's campaign last season is almost identical to what Robin van Persie did in the 08-09 season. Though RVP had the ankle injury keeping him out of much of the 09-10 campaign, it was the start of a maturation process that led him to score 69 goals in his final 100 games as a Gunner. RVP just turned 30. Giroud turns 27 on September 30. If there's a time for him to become one of the EPL's elite strikers, clearly, that time is now.

Here are the numbers. Prepare to freak out a little:

Goals: OG, 11; RVP, 11

Minutes per goal: OG, 211; RVP, 200

Shots on target: OG, 38; RVP 36

Shots off target: OG, 50; RVP 51

Total shots: OG, 88; RVP 87

Minutes per shot: OG, 26; RVP 25

Shooting accuracy: OG, 43%; RVP 41%

Chance conversion: OG, 13%; RVP, 13%

While the prospects of adding Suarez to the Arsenal attack are certainly enticing (if not polarizing, as the massive will-he-or-won't-he thread indicates), the option of addressing other needs and seeing if Giroud will make the leap in his second EPL campaign, given these numbers, is potentially fascinating.

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