Lukas Podolski life and biography

Lukas Podolski  picture, image, poster

Lukas Podolski biography

Date of birth : 1985-06-04
Date of death : -
Birthplace : Gliwice, Poland
Nationality : Polish
Category : Sports
Last modified : 2010-06-14
Credited as : Football striker fot German team, FC Köln soccer club, FIFA World Cup

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Lukas Podolski (born as Łukasz Podolski on 4 June 1985) is a Polish-born naturalized German footballer who plays as a striker for Köln and for the German national team. He joined 1. FC Köln in 1995 where he broke into the first team in 2003 and made 81 appearances for the club before moving to Bayern Munich. After three years in Munich with mixed success, Podolski returned to Köln. Although he was eligible to play for Germany and Poland, Podolski chose to play for Germany. He was first capped in 2004 and has been part of the squad in all major tournaments since then.

Lukas Podolski is a rare creature indeed. Prolific for Germany and with a strike-rate in the 50% region after well over 60 games, the striker's record at club level is much more modest. But given his propensity to shine on the big occasion and his ability to play up front or in an advanced position in midfield, this versatile talent will again be a key member of Joachim Low's side.

Podolski's international career could have taken a very different course as he was born in Poland in 1985, but it was Germany who handed him his first cap in June 2004 at the age of 19 and he travelled to Euro 2004, making one appearance in Portugal. His tally of 10 goals in 17 Bundesliga games after breaking through at Cologne had earned him international recognition and Podolski took the admirable decision to remain with the club despite their relegation that summer, scoring a league best 24 goals as they secured promotion at the first attempt.

His international prospects remained unaffected despite his club's struggles and he emerged as a key player in the 2006 World Cup finals, scoring three goals in a productive partnership with fellow Polish-born striker Miroslav Klose. A second relegation had already spelt the end of his Cologne career prior to the tournament, but a move to Bayern Munich never really worked out as he was forced to make do with a place on the substitutes' bench on numerous occasions in the following three seasons. After scoring another three goals at Euro 2008, including two against his home country Poland, and still failing to command a place in the Bayern side, Podolski rejoined Cologne, back in the Bundesliga, in the summer of 2009.

Strengths: The versatile Podolski boasts real pace and he has shown time and again on the international stage that he has the composure and quality required of any top striker. A cultured finisher, Podolski also has a creative streak and links up well with his team-mates.
Weaknesses: His inability to perform to a consistently high standard on the domestic scene is a real concern and he lacks the out-and-out brilliance and unique quality of a Fernando Torres or Cristiano Ronaldo.

Career high: Being named the Best Young Player at the 2006 World Cup finals after his three goals helped Germany reach the semi-finals. Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Cesc Fabregas were also nominated for the award.
Career low: A second relegation for Cologne in 2006, despite scoring 12 goals in 32 games, which forced him to leave his first professional club.

Style: Pacy, explosive, prolific, a livewire forward.

Quotes: "He has shown the hunger to work and wants to improve himself. He takes his occupation very seriously and lives his life accordingly. But it is difficult to always focus on what is important in football, because there are so many influences around him. Footballers these days are megastars - that is not Lukas' fault." Jurgen Klinsmann, September 2008.

Trivia: 'Poldi' has an unlikely fan in notorious socialite Paris Hilton. When asked which German footballers she knew during the 2006 World Cup, the 'multi-talented' celebrity replied: "I think Lukas Podolski is very good looking and he is an amazing player."

Soccernet says: With an outstanding record at international level, Podolski is a real talent and will again be at the forefront of Germany's efforts in South Africa. Do not bet against him bagging a few goals.

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