Arsenal transfer news: Lukas Podolski exit rumours played down by Arsene Wenger

The World Cup winner has been linked with a move to Italy

Arsene Wenger and the agent of Lukas Podolski have played down suggestions that the striker is set to leave Arsenal this summer.

Reports emerged yesterday that suggested the Gunners were ready to talk to clubs this week about letting him leave - with Juventus and Napoli among those understood to be interested.

Talk of an exit for the World Cup winner were fuelled when he failed to make the squad for the 2-2 draw with Everton on Saturday.

However Arsene Wenger, speaking ahead of Arsenal's game with Besiktas, said the striker would not be leaving.

"Podolski is in the squad for Wednesday and will stay with us," he said.

Posolski's representative also said the stories were wide of the mark, although refused to completely rule out a move.

"I read in the newspapers that Juventus and Napoli were interested in Lukas," Podolski's agent Ali Pektas told tuttomercatoweb.it.

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"But there has been no approach from either of those clubs.

"I don't know if he will go to Italy in this transfer window. I can't say anything for sure.

"The only certainty is that Lukas has a contract with Arsenal."

Podolski, who is also a target of Turkish side Galatasaray, joined Arsenal from Cologne in the summer of 2012 and has two years left on his contract.

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Even if Wenger had been considering allowing the 29-year-old to leave, news of a serious injury to Arsenal's main centre-forward may force him to reconsider. It is feared that Olivier Giroud could be out for three months with an ankle injury, news that puts a serious dent in the Gunner's ambitions this season.

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