Wenger: Podolski and Ox key to run-in
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Arsene Wenger believes the performances of Lukas Podolski and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in the FA Cup win over Coventry demonstrated the impact they can have during the closing weeks of the campaign. Podolski struck twice in a 4-0 victory as he continues his return to full fitness following a hamstring injury.

And Oxlade-Chamberlain impressed in a central midfield role in his first start injuring his knee on the opening day of the season. Podolski's goal-threat in particular provided a welcome boost to Wenger, the Arsenal manager, who could still bring in another striker during the January transfer window as he seeks back-up for Olivier Giroud.

"Podolski can score goals and when you have a goal chance you want him to have it because he is a clinical finisher. He has an unbelievable short and quick backlift and he is very accurate in his finishing," said Wenger. "He can score goals when he starts, when he comes on he is always dangerous."

Him and Jack [Wilshere] in the centre, in the future they could be a good partnership for England as well
Arsene Wenger, Arsenal manager on Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain


The manager also praised Oxlade-Chamberlain's display, describing the youngster's central partnership with Jack Wilshire as a potential international pairing.

"I liked what he did tonight in the centre, especially as long as we had the ball. Defensively he worked hard but I liked especially offensively," said Wenger. "Him and Jack in the centre, in the future they could be a good partnership for England as well."

Wenger handed a debut to 16-year-old Gedion Zelalem as a second half substitute. The Germany youth international became the first player to appear for Arsenal who was born after Wenger took charge of the club.

"It was a good opportunity to give him a chance to play. He has shown when he came on he is not scared, he is not fazed by the occasion. You could see there is some vision and some personality behind his pass."