France striker Olivier Giroud is primed to prove the doubters wrong and lead the hosts’ Euro 2016 victory bid.
Arsenal man Giroud is expected to be named at the head of Didier Deschamps’ attack for Friday’s tournament opener against Romania at the Stade de France, although he has not always found favour with Les Bleus’ faithful.
He was jeered despite scoring in a patchy 3-2 warm-up friendly win over Cameroon and the 29-year-old notched a brace as France concluded their preparations for the tournament by swatting aside Scotland 3-0.
It means Giroud has seven goals in as many international appearances and he enters Euro 2016 in defiant mood.
He told beIN Sport: “My brother had a saying which is very important for me: ‘The construction of the road to success is never quite finished.’
“[This is] even more true in football, where after every weekend people can diss you or congratulate you.
“I have to prove myself, to show my desire to score goals and to win titles and leave a mark in history.
“That’s what I want, to make my family and the people close to me proud.”
The pressure of home advantage could weigh heavily on France, who were triumphant as hosts at the 1984 European Championship and 1998 World Cup, but Giroud only views their status as a positive.
“We represent the French people and when you play at home, it’s logical to aspire to leave your mark,” he added.
“There are huge expectations, but we’re ready.”
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