by Lewis Ambrose
After completing his move from Arsenal to Galatasaray, Lukas Podolski has suggested that Arsène Wenger persuaded him to move.
Podolski’s agent previously suggested that Arsène Wenger was desperate to keep the forward, but couldn’t guarantee him minutes on the pitch. That always seemed a stretch as well as being a bit of a contradiction, and the German had ended up in Turkey.
“After good and open talks with Arsene Wenger I came to the conclusion that a change was the right decision,” Podolski has told Sport Bild.
Those talks are likely to have been straightforward. Podolski needs to play football more regularly, while the player was clearly not prominent in Wenger’s plans. Getting a small fee for the player is a bonus, but getting his wages off of the wage bill is a big plus.
Now the player is at a club that should play him regularly, and everyone is a winner.
“Galatasaray have tried very hard to get me for five years and in the end, the whole package fitted.
“The league is not at the level of the Premier League or the Bundesliga. But Galatasaray are a permanent feature in the Champions League and have stars such as Wesley Sneijder, who are world-renowned.”
As fate would have it, what are the chances Arsenal have to face the Turkish giants – with Podolski – in the Champions League this season?
“Istanbul is a world metropolis and Galatasaray have a very good name in world football.”
The German is already 30 years old, and thinking about his career winding down.
“When I have fulfilled my contract with Galatasaray completely, I’ll be 34 years old.
“Every career will eventually come to an end, even mine. Still, I can well imagine that I will go on to Köln.”
The Bundesliga outfit were never in the frame to sign Podolski this season, with his wages costing too much. Maybe he will be more willing to take a further pay cut to return back to his ‘home’ as his career reaches the very end.