Podolski brought back into the fold to fire Arsenal past Besiktas

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Lukas Podolski was probably packing his bags and getting ready to say his goodbyes at Arsenal when the news broke of the seriousness of the ankle injury Olivier Giroud sustained in the 2-2 draw with Everton at the weekend.

If reports are to be believed the French striker has been ruled out for three months of the season and while speculation continues to mount about whether Arsene Wenger will make a late dive into the transfer market, Podolski has been handed a second chance in north London.

Juventus, Napoli and Galatasaray were all interested in taking the German international away from the Emirates Stadium but it seemed Wolfsburg were close to agreeing the deal.

However, following Giroud’s injury Wenger has stated the 29-year-old is going nowhere.

“Podolski is in the squad tomorrow and will stay with us,” Wenger told reporters in his pre-match press conference

Arsene Wenger will be hoping Lukas Podolski can reproduce goals like his spectacular volley against Montpellier back in 2012:

Arsenal will be hoping Podolski can hit the ground running when they face Besiktas in the second leg of the club’s Champions League play-off.

The World Cup winner is 11/2 to score the first goal as Arsenal look to book their place in the group stage of Europe’s premier club competition for the 17th consecutive season.

The Germany forward, who has featured nine times in Europe for the Gunners and scored five times, is 7/4 with Ladbrokes to score anytime, while he is 40/1 to mark his return to competitive action with a hat-trick.

But with Podolski’s lack of match practice so far this season it could pay to back the former Cologne man to feature from the bench and score the last goal of the game at 11/2 with the bookmaker.

And with Arsenal the hot 2/5 favourites for victory it could prove profitable to back Podolski to score in an Arsenal victory in the Wincast market at 9/4.

Whatever happens at the Emirates tomorrow night Podolski, who has scored 28 goals in 69 Arsenal appearances, may now just prove to be a valuable asset this season for Wenger.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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