Arsenal and Tottenham have been dealt a blow in their pursuit of Cologne striker Lukas Podolski, according to reports in Germany.
Arsene Wenger and Harry Redknapp had both been given hope of signing the Germany international, as he had expressed openness to a transfer.
The question of whether he goes to Emirates Stadium or White Hart Lane may have been settled for now though, with Cologne manager Stale Solbakken saying he is going nowhere.
It is thought Podolski is becoming frustrated at the lack of success at his native club, and is ready to seek a move to a bigger club ahead of the Euro 2012.
However, Solbakken says Podolski is far too important to his team to let go and they are even hoping he will sign an extension to his contract, which runs out in 2013.
"Lukas is a first-team regular and he is under contract with our club," he told BILD.
"I'm looking forward to seeing him stay at our club. Anything but staying on would be a tough blow for everyone at the club."
Signing the former Bayern Munich man would be something of a coup for either side, as Cologne are not in European competition and he would therefore not be cup-tied.
‘Poldi’ has already scored nine goals this season, coming in just 12 appearances for the Bundesliga side.
Were Podolski to sign for Arsenal, he would join compatriot and fellow Germany international Per Merteseacker.News Now - Sport News