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Horst Heldt reacts to speculation that Lukas Podolski could return to FC Köln

By Rune Gjerulff   @runegjerulff

FC Köln boss Horst Heldt has opened the door to a return for Lukas Podolski.
Lukas Podolski.
Lukas Podolski.Photo: Sven Mandel / CC-BY-SA-4.0
FC Köln new head of sport, Horst Heldt, has reacted to speculation that Lukas Podolski could return to RheinEnergieStadion in January.

The former FC Köln player's contract with Japanese side Vissel Kobe runs out in January, and Heldt says he would welcome the 34-year-old back if he's interested.

"Of course, I would try to integrate such an icon. We would be obliged to fit such a player in," Heldt told reporters at a press conference today.

"First of all, he has to decide what he wants. Podolski must know what he would like to do. I don't know his thoughts," he added.

Podolski has also been linked with Polish side Gornik Zabrze. The former German international was born in Poland and supported the club as a child.

The 34-year-old made his debut for Köln in 2003 after coming through the youth ranks at the club. He left to join Bayern München in 2006, but returned to Köln in 2009 and stayed until 2012 when he made the switch to Arsenal.

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