Olivier Giroud the well-groomed, half-speed Costa, looks an ideal fit | Barney Ronay

Olivier Giroud the well-groomed, half-speed Costa, looks an ideal fit | Barney Ronay

The striker, signed by Chelsea from Arsenal last month, has a physical presence and is a good foil for Eden Hazard

Squint a little as Chelsea dispatched West Bromwich Albion at Stamford Bridge and at times it was as though the champions’ attack was doing a slightly rattly impersonation of its old self, regenerated around a really handsome, well-groomed half-speed Diego Costa.

There has been a degree of scoffing at the last-ditch harpooning of Olivier Giroud during the January transfer window. The suggestion has been that Arsenal’s reserve striker is in some sense a sub-Chelsea signing, a gloss on otherwise stalled ambition. This is, of course, unfair on Giroud, who is still France’s number one No 9 and who provided an illuminating combination at times with Eden Hazard, who was once again an evolutionary rung or two above everyone else on the pitch

Related: Eden Hazard and Victor Moses relieve Chelsea pressure in West Brom win

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