By Wayne Veysey | Chief Correspondent
Arsenal have told Schalke that Lukas Podolski is not for sale after he was suggested by the German club as part of an ambitious swap deal for defender Atsuto Uchida, Goal can reveal.
Talks have been held between the two clubs after the Gunners made a €7 million bid for Japanese right-back Uchida earlier this week, with Arsene Wenger sanctioning a flurry of moves for new signings.
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The French boss is unwilling to sell the 28-year-old forward even though he has had a frustrating time at the Emirates Stadium since joining from Koln last year.
Podolski was omitted from the starting line-up for the Gunners’ 3-1 defeat to Aston Villa last weekend in favour of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain but returned to the team for the 3-0 midweek win against Fenerbahce.
Goal revealed last week that Arsenal had targeted Uchida to provide defensive cover this season and be groomed as a long-term replacement for Bacary Sagna.
Wenger wants a right-back who can fit in with the Gunners’ playing style and challenge Carl Jenkinson for the first-team slot if Sagna leaves when his current agreement expires next summer.The Frenchman re-opened contract talks with Arsenal earlier this month but there was no breakthrough and he is still expected to leave the north London club.