Thursday, 28th June, 2012

Montpellier president Louis Nicollin has explained he was powerless to stop Olivier Giroud joining Arsenal after the Gunners met his release clause.

Nicollin had hoped to keep hold of Giroud for a further season, with the thought being that the 25-year-old could spearhead the newly crowned French champions’ Champions League campaign.

But with a buy-out clause of just €12M in the striker’s contract, Montpellier were always vulnerable to an approach from one of Europe’s elite sides.

That ultimately occurred when Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal moved for the France international, tempting him to the Emirates Stadium.

Nicollin admits nothing could be done to keep Giroud at the Stade de la Mosson, but insists he has learned his lesson for future.

"Regarding Giroud, there was a clause of €12M", the Montpellier supremo told French radio station RMC.

"He was sold at that price. He wanted to go there, he went there – it’s settled.

"We won’t cry, we will recover.

"He said he would perhaps stay for another year – he has not.

"When a player has a clause, it is difficult to fight to keep them. Now we will increase clauses."
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