Wenger: Podolski still has work to do

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed his intentions to convert Lukas Podolski into a centre forward.

Football News: Lukas Podolski Oliver Giroud Cologn

By ESPNSTAR.com staff

Despite the loss of Robin van Persie, Arsenal fans were cautiously optimistic that new signings Podolski, Santi Carzola and Olivier Giroud would take up the goal-scoring duties this season. However, Wenger's men did not get off the best of starts, as they failed to hit the back of the net in a 0-0 draw with Sunderland in the opening weekend. 

The Gunners manager called for patience from the supporters, as he believes Podolski still has some adapting to do for his new centralized role.

"I see him as a centre forward but he has some work to do, to change his game a little bit, make runs in behind to protect the ball and move around the box, when you come from a wide position, it is not easy to do that. But he will get there. He is a fantastic finisher, but had no real opportunity [against Sunderland]," Wenger said to the club's official website.

"I will have to watch the game again and see what he did when we had the ball. I will have to study it."

Arsenal's inability to score against the Black Cats naturally generated murmurs of a drop in quality upfront with van Persie's absence, but Wenger was more concerned by what he perceived to be a lack of creativity that led to a dearth in chances.

"You cannot conclude on one game, but we knew before we started [that it would be difficult to replace Van Persie's goals], Podolski and Giroud together scored 40 last year, so we have a credit of three, but unfortunately it does not work like that," he stated.
"Overall I am happy with the spirit we have shown, but the frustration is that we are used to more creativity. That was the big miss."

Wenger also claimed that the club's transfer dealings were not yet done, with the French manager hoping to bring in a midfielder and a defender before the transfer window closes.

"We are looking to bring one more midfielder in of course, and maybe one defender as well because we still feel we are short in some positions," he added.

Arsenal visit Stoke for their next Premier League game on Sunday.

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