Arsenal

Mikel Arteta sent Thomas Partey message in Premier League title race amid Arsenal injury setback

Mikel Arteta has been sent a clear Thomas Partey message that he must follow if Arsenal are to win the Premier League title. The Gunners are embroiled in quite the battle against Manchester City and Liverpool while Aston Villa and Tottenham with just six points separating first and fifth.

Injuries have already played a significant part in the title race this season with Arsenal losing Jurrien Timber and Partey for the long-term. The Netherlands international suffered a serious knee injury in August and he is not expected back until March at the earliest, while Partey has season his season plagued by two separate injuries.

The 30-year-old was spotted working his way back to action at London Colney in early December, however a squad announcement appears to show he has since suffered a setback. A return in January was an early estimation however he was left out of the official Ghana squad for the upcoming African Cup of Nations.

I’ve spent a lot of this period of time with Thomas and also engaged the medical staff at Arsenal,” Black Stars boss Chris Hughton admitted. “They will treat this injury with caution, and so will the player. This is a big injury for him, the biggest injury he’s had.”
With the tournament not finishing until February, the announcement suggests Partey may not be back in action for Arsenal until after that date. Given his injury issues, Partey leaving north London in the near future seems very likely as Arteta seemingly cannot trust him to stay fit.

Despite this, Arsenal legend Ray Parlour has given his verdict on the future and injury issues of Partey, suggesting the Gunners are far more likely to achieve their goals with him in the squad. “If they won’t give him the long-term contract he wants, it might be better to let him go,” Parlour told Tipsbladet.
He has been somewhat injury-prone, and Arsenal probably doesn’t want to put the money on the table that his agent wants. So, it might quickly prove better to let him go and get some money for him instead. It’s all about the right balance. So, it’s the same situation they faced with Granit Xhaka; if you lose him, you lose him, and let’s move on. But in an ideal world, I believe a player like Partey should be at least part of the squad if Arsenal wants to win the title.”

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