Podolski finding form
Arsenal striker Lukas Podolski has admitted he found it hard to adjust to the hectic demands of Premier League football after his move from Cologne last summer.
Podolski's stunning goal in Wednesday night's 2-0 Champions League win against Montpellier was the highlight of a week that also saw him score his first North London derby goal against Tottenham last Saturday, with the German international suggesting he is starting to settle to his task at Arsenal.
"Sometimes it is not easy when you come from another country and another league and playing every three days is new for me," Podolski told the club's official website. "I think I have played very well in the last few matches and I'm looking forward to scoring a lot more goals and making some success for the team and for the club.
"We have seven points from our last three matches played at home. We were unlucky in the game against Fulham because we went in front by two goals and could only draw, but we won the derby against Tottenham and an important Champions League game against Montpellier. These results mean a lot."
Podolski seems to be warming to his wing role in Arsene Wenger's line-up less than a month after saying he would prefer to play as a central striker, yet his manager is convinced he can adapt wherever he is asked to play.
"We are talking about a guy who has played more than 100 times for Germany, a guy who has experience at big clubs and in big matches," Wenger said.
"I don't know any forward who says they don't want to play as the central striker, but one of the reasons we bought Lukas was because he could play in a variety of positions.
"He took time to understand the Premier League and he is not alone in this. It can be a shock when a player comes from another country because physically, English football is a challenge, but I am happy with him."
Full-back Bacary Sagna joined the chorus of plaudits for Podolski's wonder-strike, claiming such power-packed finishes are common place for the German at Arsenal's London Colney training HQ.
"We know he has a very strong shot and we always see him finishing like that in training," stated the Frenchman. "He has shown that he is a great player, that he can score great goals. Everyone was really happy to see him scoring like he did."