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LAFC’s ‘French Connection’ grows with addition of Giroud

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LAFC adds pivotal piece to their French Connections they welcome FIFA World Cup winner Olivier Giroud to the Los Angeles club.

LOS ANGELES — Thanks to Olivier Giroud, LAFC’s French Revolution is officially on.

A day after Giroud announced he was leaving AC Milan for LAFC, the Major League Soccer team unveiled the star forward Tuesday.

Giroud will be joining fellow Frenchmen Hugo Lloris, Denís Bouanga and Maxime Chanot. He will occupy one of the team’s two Designated Player slots through 2025, with an option for an additional year.

He will be arriving this summer during the MLS transfer window, which runs from July 18-Aug. 14, after the UEFA Euro tournament concludes.

“I am delighted and excited to join LAFC,” Giroud said. “I can’t wait to get to Los Angeles and to play in front of the 3252 and all of the incredible fans.”  

LAFC co-president and general manager John Thorrington added: “Olivier has a clear hunger to win, which he has done consistently throughout his club and international career. His championship ambition and his qualities as a man and as a player directly align with ours as a club, therefore we believe Olivier will be a great addition as we continue in our pursuit of more trophies.”

The 2018 FIFA World Cup winner joins a bevy of titans of the global game who have been coming to MLS for decades. Well before Lionel Messi arrived along with his teammates Luis Suarez, Jordi Alba, and Sergio Busquets, the North American league has been home to some of the greatest of generations.

LA Galaxy led the way with former Premier League star David Beckham and the lion of the game, Zlatan Ibrahimović. The list also includes many more including Carlos Valderrama, Thierry Henry, Wayne Rooney, Didier Drogba, Robbie Keane, Kaká, David Villa, Andrea Pirlo, and Bastian Schweinsteiger.

LAFC signed the Carlos Vela as their first-ever player in 2022 and added Gareth Bale and Giorgio Chiellini, two pivotal pieces to their MLS Cup winning campaign.

Given the timing of Giroud’s arrival, he would be eligible for the Leagues Cup, MLS Cup race, and the final stages of the U.S. Open Cup if LAFC were to advance.

“It’s amazing to add a player of his stature,” LAFC coach Steve Cherundolo said. “For those who don’t know, he is a real leader in the locker room and I think that’s the real quality we’ll profit the most from.”

France’s all-time leading goal scorer has spent his last three seasons with AC Milan helping them win the title in his debut season, notching 48 goals across 130 appearances in his Serie A career. He made history in Oct. 2023 when he filled in as a goalkeeper in stoppage time — blocking a shot to keep a clean sheet for the Rossoneri during a league match.

Giroud joined Milan in 2021 after four seasons with Chelsea, where he won the UEFA Champions League, Europa League, and FA Cup. He previously spent six years at rival EPL club Arsenal, scoring 105 goals in 253 games and winning three FA Cups.

Across his storied career spanning nearly two decades, he also played for Grenoble, Istres FC, and Tours FC, Montpellier HSC where he aided the club to their first and only Ligue 1 championship.

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