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Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta says it is “incredible” that his team has only enjoyed the “great quality” of Thomas Partey twice since signing.
Midfielder Partey joined the gunmen in October from Atlético de Madrid, but injury problems have stopped his progression.
He suffered a thigh injury against Villa in early November that ruled him out for a month.
However, after apparently recovering before the clash with Tottenham in December, the problem reoccurred and the ghanian returned to the sidelines.
As such, he has had to miss more action, but is in contention to return when Arsenal take on Crystal Palace on Thursday.
Arteta said (through the Daily mirror): “It’s incredible that we are in January, we signed him in the summer and we only played with him twice.
“So we haven’t really seen the impact that we think it could have on the team.
“Obviously, we have missed it. On the other hand, we have also seen players intervening. When that happens, they also give us really positive news.
“But I think it will be a huge advantage if we can keep him in shape.”
Arteta added that he hopes that Partey’s presence in recent training sessions has boosted his other players.
Arteta hails Partey’s influence
“Absolutely and because obviously we can see it in training,” said the Spanish coach.
And who is he too. I think it has a different presence. I think he brings something different to the team.
“It’s not just about his talent, it’s not about his physique, it’s who he is as a person. He makes the players better around him and that’s a great quality ”.
Arsenal have already built up impressive momentum on top of their obvious injury spike. The north London club have won their last four matches, including three in the Premier League.
As such, they have climbed the rankings after languishing at the low end before Christmas.
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