Lukas Podolski was one of the many players that Arsenal lost through injury last season and that was a real shame for us, because the German international had started the season well and could well have made a real difference in the race for the Premier League title.
Podolski still managed an impressive strike rate of 12 goals from 27 games and many of those games he did not start or was subbed off. So it is hardly surprising that the 29-year old feels that he can offer a lot to the Gunners’ cause this season, as long as he is given the opportunity to do so/
In an ESPN report, Podolski speaks about his desire to start more games but also suggests that he doubts whether he really has the full confidence of Arsene Wenger. And he feels that the signing of Danny Welbeck on transfer deadline day will not really help his chances, especially as the former United forward is bound to get plenty of chances to impress.
The German said, “Initially, it’s a difficult situation for me. When you buy new players for a lot of money they have an advantage because they will play.
“But we’ve got a long season ahead of us, and we’ll see what happens. When I am in top shape, I am a perfect fit for the Arsenal team. And I see myself in the first XI then, that’s what I work towards.
“I am not sure[about having Wenger’s trust], I hope that that’s the case.
“The title is not a dream, it’s possible. But there are five or six other teams with similar thoughts. It will be down to the details in the end.
“We only won six points in the matches against the other top five clubs . Those were the points that cost us the title. We were in front for half a year, but dropped decisive points against Chelsea, Manchester City and Liverpool towards the end. We need to change that this year.
“There were some enquiries from abroad, and also from the Bundesliga. But as a Cologne guy, it would have been difficult to play for another club in Germany. To go to Russia – Walachia [a German expression for the middle of nowhere] – or the United States was in no way an alternative for me.
“I had a chat with Arsene Wenger, during which he told me that he is banking on my firepower and assists, and wants to keep me. That’s why the issue of a transfer was rather secondary to me. I feel great in London and at Arsenal, and it continues to stay like that.”
We have often discussed on this website why the Prof has been so sparing in his use of probably the best finisher in the Arsenal squad, but it could well have been a fitness issue as Podolski was adapting in that first season and was then inju8red last time. The boss did start to use him more and for whole games as last season wore on, so I think Podolski will get a fair chance if he keeps working hard.
And until Theo Walcott is fully match sharp again, I can see the manager going with Alexis on the right of Welbeck, leaving that left role for Podolski to fight Cazorla for and the Spaniard has not been at his best. So now is your chance Lukas! But will he take it Gooners?