Podolski an excellent purchase for Arsenal
In just under a month, Germany forward Lukas Podolski will officially arrive at Arsenal after signing for an undisclosed fee from FC Koln. I believe that this is all already one of the best transfer deals of the summer and that Podolski will flourish in the Premier League.
Since making his first team debut in November 2003, Podolski has played 291 games during a three year spell from 2006-2009 with Bayern Munich sandwiched between two spells with FC Koln, scoring 112 goals in the process giving him a not to be sniffed at average of a goal every 2.6 games. This sort of form did not go unnoticed by the German national side and at the time of writing Podolski has played 95 times for his country, scoring 43 goals, leaving him with an even better average at international level of a goal every 2.2 games. Podolski is big, (coming in at just under 6 foot), with a powerful left foot. He is also quick and creative with the ball, linking up well with team-mates and being an effective link from midfield to strikers.
Some critics have looked back at Podolski’s time at Bayern Munich and stated that he failed and that he can only really be effective and consistent when he is the number one man, as shown during both successful stints at FC Koln. There were extenuating circumstances though that affected Podolski at Bayern. Apart from his first season in Bavaria, Podolski was not a regular starter, playing in only 22 and 25 league games during his last two seasons at the club respectively and only managing nine goals as a result. An injury sustained in training thanks to Mark van Bommel did not help, nor did the purchase of Italian Luca Toni, who knocked Podolski down the pecking order. The argument that Podolski can not cut it with a big club looks thin when you look at his form with the German national side, which is full of top quality players all wanting to be the main attraction; Thomas Muller, Manuel Neuer, Mesut Ozil and Mario Gomez to name but a few.
Podolski will also want to prove himself at Arsenal for another reason; he arrives at the Emirates after leaving a relegated club. Despite scoring 18 league goals last season, no player wants to be relegated and it would have hurt Podolski’s pride greatly. I think this will only spur him onto want to start winning things again with Arsenal and an enthusiastic and rejuvenated Poldolski can only be a good thing for the Gunners. His arrival will also show a certain Robin van Persie that Arsenal mean business this summer and that Arsene Wenger is still ambitious with what he wants to achieve in North London. If van Persie stays, the potential partnership him and Podolski form could be formidable and their goals could cause more than a little concern in two certain managers’ offices in Manchester.
Arsenal have made an excellent and uncharacteristic early decision in signing Podolski before Euro 2012. Podolski always shines at major international tournaments, (winning the best young player at World Cup 2006 ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo and Messi) and if they had waited in signing him there is a strong chance his price would have rocketed. With a good Euro’s behind him, with most probably a winner’s medal to boot, Podolski will start in the Premier League brimming with confidence, keen to show what he can do to the Arsenal fans and the rest of the country. And I feel he will show us an awful lot.