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The Germany international replaced the suspended Olivier Giroud up front against Manchester United, and his manager is set to stick with him in the central role in upcoming games

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has confirmed that he intends to persist with Lukas Podolski as a central striker in the absence of the suspended Olivier Giroud.

Podolski has completed the full 90 minutes on just four of his 39 appearances this season, and has been advised to undergo corrective ankle surgery in the summer, as Goal.com exclusively revealed.

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The German forward has played most of his football on the left since moving to the Emirates Stadium last summer, where he is usually deployed for the national team, but led the line in last weekend’s 1-1 draw against Manchester United.

Although he struggled to impose himself in that match, his manager insists that the former Koln man has all the attributes to succeed in the role, with Giroud out for a further two games.

"I believe [he can play up front], he has the qualities because he is a good finisher," Wenger told the club's offical website.

"He has a good technique and because we have a game based on very quick combinations I believe he can be a part of that. Overall I am convinced in the coming games he will show it.

"At the moment, yes [I will play Podolski in the middle]. A definite decision has not been made but if there is an opportunity then there is a good chance I will do it."

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