Lukas Podolski told he's still part of Arsene Wenger's plans

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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has insisted he'll pay no attention to persistent speculation surrounding the future Lukas Podolski, telling the German international to do the same and focus on delivering for the Gunners when called upon this season.

Podolski has been a peripheral figure in the early part of the campaign to say the very least, with just three substitute appearances totalling 39 minutes in the Premier League and a single start in the League Cup despite big injury problems at the Emirates.

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The 29-year-old admitted himself that he'll be forced to give serious consideration to a January transfer if the situation doesn't change quickly, but Wenger is adamant he will use Podolski and will demand total commitment when his chance eventually comes.

Wenger told Sky Sports: “It is quite simple, there is no transfer market at the moment. When there is no transfer market, you are all on board – or not on board. It is like that.

“This is a job where you can only be successful if you’re fully committed. You cannot be half in and half out, so all this transfer speculation is not considered at all.

“We are all on board to get results, and Podolski will be part of that.”

Sink or swim in third Premier League season

In fairness to Podolski his goal return since joining Arsenal back in 2012 has been very solid, scoring 16 and 12 across all competitions in the last two seasons respectively.

Wenger rarely trusts the left-sided forward to start in big matches though, and even when he gets the nod Podolski is often substituted before a crunch clash concludes.

Podolski's slide towards the role of reserve is even more alarming when you consider the problems Arsenal have had keeping their best players fit so far this season.

When you consider the stern competition for places at the Emirates you have to question the merit of keeping Podolski on a wage of around £100,000-a-week, but there's still time for the man with a rocket of a left foot to maintain his status as a fan favourite with strong performances heading towards the end of the year.

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