Germany forward Lukas Podolski has a lot to prove at Arsenal
Sharethematch.com looks at Lukas Podolski's latest milestone, and whether the German striker can be a hit at Arsenal
Podolski has a lot to prove at Arsenal
Just two weeks after turning 27, Lukas Podolski became the youngest European footballer in history to reach 100 international caps as Germany beat Denmark.
He celebrated the landmark occasion by scoring his 44th international goal and in doing so moved to number seven on the all-time appearance list for Germany, and third in the goal scoring charts.
Legendary Germany midfielder Lothar Matthaus is a long way out ahead with 150 caps but overhauling Miroslav Klose (118) into second seems a realistic possibility.
The tag of Germany’s all-time top goal scorer is not out of reach either, with Jurgen Klinsmann on 47 and Klose on 63.
It seems as though Arsenal have pulled off a relative transfer coup by capturing a man for £11m who is young enough to still have his best days ahead of him but also with an avalanche of international experience.
Podolski has seemingly scored goals regularly at international level for Germany but has not always transferred that form to the club game – and that is a concern for Arsène Wenger.
He was a major flop at Bayern Munich earlier in his career after securing a big-money move, while he never scored a frequently for Cologne.
He may have just enjoyed his best scoring return in the German top-flight last season but Arsenal supproters should be warned – Podolski is not a direct replacement for Gunners captain Robin van Persie if he decides to leave.
Podolski is more of a second striker or even a winger, so don’t expect the flying German to hit the back of the net in the Premier League with too much regularity.
There must be a catch why Arsenal have secured this record breaker so cheaply and also why no big clubs from outside of Germany have ever looked at Podolski.
Does he have a bad attitude, a poor injury record or is he simply not world class? Arsenal supporters will hope it is none of those things but surely there is a nagging feeling that perhaps Podolski is not the real deal at club level.
Ronaldo back in the hunt for Golden Boot
The self-proclaimed best player in the world, Cristiano Ronaldo, ended his Euro 2012 drought with both goals in a 2-1 win as Portugal booked a quarter-final showdown with the Czech Republic.
But up until the meeting with the Netherlands, the Portugal captain was enduring a tournament to forget.
He was ineffective against Germany and then missed a number of simple chances against Denmark, the likes of which he buried left, right and centre for Real Madrid this season where he racked up 60 goals in all competitions.
But in Kharkiv he finally turned up – and just when his team needed him most.
With his side 1-0 down to Rafael van der Vaart’s fantastic curling opener, Ronaldo stood up to be counted and produced arguably his best ever performance at a major international tournament.
Once again he looked like the player who terrorised defences in La Liga all season. If he can carry on this form then he will surely be back among the favourites for the prestigious Euro 2012 Golden Boot award, while propelling Portugal back into contention to win the whole thing.
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