I was hoping that the Arsenal and Germany international forward Lukas Podolski was given a good run out by his national coach Joachim Low tonight, as the World Cup holders play host to Republic of Ireland in a Euro qualifying group. But now I am not so sure.
The way that our luck with injuries is going at the minute, I would rather that Podolski is not used at all. The reason for my change of mind is that the growing injury list that now includes Tomas Rosicky and Mesut Ozil means that the statement by Arsene Wenger reported by Sky Sports the other day will now almost certainly come true.
The Frenchman was talking about the German striker’s frustration at his lack of playing time but he assured us that Podolski was a part of his plans. And as long as the prolific 29-year old, who is still the best finisher of chances that we have at Arsenal, returns to north London in a fit condition, I can see him starting against Hull City on Saturday.
Wenger said, “It is quite simple, there is no transfer market at the moment. When there is no transfer market, you are all on board – or not on board. It is like that.
“This is a job where you can only be successful if you’re fully committed. You cannot be half in and half out, so all this transfer speculation is not considered at all.
“We are all on board to get results, and Podolski will be part of that.”
The important thing now is for Podolski to take this chance that he has been waiting for. After Hull, the Gunners have away games with Anderlecht and Sunderland and then home ties with Burnley and the Belgians again before a trip to Swansea. And these six games give the striker the perfect platform to score some goals and show Wenger that he is a valuable player for Arsenal. But will he?