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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Wenger: Podolski staying at Arsenal

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has said Lukas Podolski will remain at the club despite reports the forward could leave before the close of the transfer window.

Wenger unsure on Giroud injury return

Wenger commented on Podolski's future after announcing that Olivier Giroud will see a specialist about his injured ankle, amid reports he could be out for three months.

The Germany international had been linked with a move away from the Gunners, with a return to the Bundesliga mooted as a potential option and Juventus also mentioned.

However, it seems Podolski, who signed for Arsenal from Cologne in 2012, will be staying with the Premier League club.

The French coach said at a news conference ahead of Wednesday's Champions League meeting with Besiktas: "Podolski is in the squad tomorrow and will stay with us."

Arsenal's first leg in their playoff with Besiktas ended in a goalless draw in Turkey, with midfielder Aaron Ramsey sent off in the second half.

Looking ahead to the match, Wenger said: "It's a very important game because we want to play at the top level, on an international level. It's important more on the sporting side than on the financial side.

"Besiktas played very well against us and we want to show them that we can play very well at home too. At the end of the day that is the most important thing is to go out and play at our best.

"Of course our experience plays a big part. We have a big experience in the Champions league, big experience of playing high-pressure games. We can use that on Wednesday.

"What is more important is the performance on the day, to turn up with a strong display. I am confident this group is strong, is mentally prepared, has a great togetherness and is ready for the fight."


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