Chelsea ready to activate one-year extension in contract of striker Giroud

Olivier Giroud is set to extend his stay at Chelsea by another year, with Blues manager Frank Lampard keen to keep the Frenchman as an option in his squad.

The Blues are also set to step up their chase for Napoli striker Dries Mertens who becomes a free agent in the summer.

Giroud, 33, has a one-year option which his club are ready to activate with his contract expiring on June 30.

The French international striker had only made five Premier League starts when football was suspended but he came in from the cold to score twice in the Premier League in five games before English football ground to a halt.

Activating the option in his contract means any club now wanting to sign Giroud will need to agree a fee with Chelsea. Inter Milan retain an interest along with a number of clubs in England.

Chelsea have also been linked with an audacious move for Arsenal striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, for whom Arsenal are known to be listening to offers due to the fact his contract expires at the end of next season.

The Gunners are therefore being forced to make a decision on Aubameyang's future with the player wanting an upgrade on his £200,000-a-week wages – something that looks a tough ask given the financial ramification of Covid-19.

Aubameyang is refusing to sign a new deal at Arsenal amid interest from a number of big clubs, and it is looking more and more likely that he could be moving on to pastures new in the near future.

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