The Dutch manager was fired on Monday, after a 5-2 home defeat to Arsenal on Sunday left Everton 18th in the table, with just eight points from their first nine games.And, although the club spent £140m in the summer, they also received around £90m for Lukaku alone, and Koeman told Dutch football magazine VI that a plan to replace the striker with Giroud fell through.“I had Olivier Giroud in the building,” said Koeman.“He would have fitted perfectly but, at the very last moment, he decided that he’d rather live in London and stay at Arsenal.“That was really hard to swallow. You tell me, where you can get a better striker?Everton manager Ronald Koeman during the side’s friendly match with Gor Mahia in Dar es Salaam Tanzania in July 2017. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu“Lukaku was so important for us, not just because of his goals. If things were not going well in a game, if we could not play the way we were used to, there was always the option to use the long ball towards him.“All of a sudden, we were missing such a player. With Nikola Vlasic and Wayne Rooney, we had attackers who want the ball at their feet.”Everton were also handed a tough run of fixtures to start the season and, although they kicked off with a win over Stoke and a draw at Manchester City, losses to Chelsea, Tottenham and Manchester United followed.Koeman added: “I was on holiday when I received the Premier League fixture list by e-mail.“I looked at it and saw that five of our first nine games would be against clubs from last season’s top six: Chelsea, Tottenham, Man City, Man United and Arsenal.“I looked at it again and I said to myself, ‘Phew! That is not going to be an easy run, in particular with a Europa League run at the same time’. And, most of all, because I had lost my striker Lukaku.”-By Sky Sports-0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Arsenal’s striker Olivier Giroud celebrates scoring Arsenal’s fourth goal during the English Premier League football match against Leicester City at the Emirates Stadium in London on August 11, 2017LONDON, United Kingdom, Oct 26- Former Everton manager Ronald Koeman says that the seeds for his departure were sown when Arsenal forward Olivier Giroud decided against a move to Goodison Park.Giroud was seen as a player who could compensate for the loss of Romelu Lukaku and Koeman thinks the failure to adequately replace the Belgian forward, combined with a tough fixture list, sealed his fate.
Raheem Sterling in action for Liverpool 1 Arsene Wenger refused to be drawn on whether he will make a move for Liverpool forward Raheem Sterling but says he will be active in the transfer market during the summer.Sterling could be heading through the exit door at Anfield following the latest reports that the England striker is expected to tell Brendan Rodgers that he wants to leave at the end of the season.Arsenal have been strongly linked with a move for the 20-year-old who is emerging as one of the best young talents in Europe.But Wenger is adamant he will not enter any transfer negotiations until the end of May when the season has finished.Wenger said: “I do not bid for anybody at the moment. In the summer we will bid for people. At the moment we are not in transfer mode at all.“We want to finish our season well. We have put massive effort in since the start of the season to come back into a potentially good position in the Premier League, and now we need to focus on finishing well.“We have put so much effort in that it would be stupid not to finish the job well. The transfer period comes after the FA Cup final.“You absolutely want me to say something that I don’t want to say. I don’t like to lie. If I say that I will and I don’t do it, then I have lied.”