What will Thomas Partey Add to this Arsenal Side?
With Arsenal confirming the signing on deadline day after activating the player's release clause, how good will he be for the Gunners?
What have Arsenal missed for the last decade?
Arsenal have always been one of the best teams to watch in Europe. A significant reason behind this is their excellent passing play which was introduced by the great A. Wenger. However, despite playing exciting football, the club has struggled for trophies throughout the last decade. The indigent defense has been something always connected with Arsenal. In the last decade, Arsenal have been one of the worst sides from a defensive perspective.
The shoddy defense is always harmful and makes a good team vulnerable. However, it's not just about the backline; Arsenal have struggled massively to find a world-class defensive midfielder. Since the departure of legendary P. Vieira, Arsenal have not found a commanding holding midfielder who will make the midfield more robust.
Arsenal have consistently had great ball-playing midfielders at their peak. Players like T. Rosický, S. Cazorla González, etc. have been great during their time in North London. Still, after having those outstanding footballers, Arsenal have not won the Premier League since 2004. In the more recent Arsenal have enjoyed watching M. Özil in their side creating numerous chances. Players like G. Xhaka and D. Ceballos Fernández in the current Arsenal midfield provide creativity but lack the defensive discipline.
How crucial could Partey be for Arteta's side?
M. Arteta Amatriain has been excellent in his first summer transfer window as an Arsenal manager. He brought some key players like W. Borges da Silva and G. dos Santos Magalhães into the side. However, as mentioned, a genuine defensive midfielder was the priority, and it happened on deadline day. Arsenal activated the release clause of the former Atlético Madrid midfielder T. Partey and brought him to the Emirates. The Gunners have been following the 27-year-old for nearly four years.
Partey would add something that Arsenal fans have not seen since the departure of Patrick Vieira. Partey is an intelligent and robust holding midfielder who was excellent throughout his tenure in Spain. The Ghanian completed 89% of his dribbles last season in La Liga. He was a critical figure under D. Simeone and recorded a 71% success in his aerial duels. Partey registered 1.4 interceptions and 2 per game. He also completed nearly 3 long balls per 90. The most impressive stat is he completed more than 5 progressive passes per game which something he will have to do under Arteta as well.
With his arrival, Arsenal get a midfielder who can sweep up and stop counter-attacks on his own. His presence will allow the more creative players like Ceballos and Xhaka to get into advanced positions. Patey's arrival could also help Ozil to return in form as a robust no.6 always protects a silky no.10.
As the stats prove, Partey is not only a mere destroyer but also an excellent footballer who understands the game well. He is set to become a pivotal part of Arteta's good looking project.