Arsenal have been told to stay patient with one big-money signing yet to prove his worth as he’s a “really powerful and intelligent player” who will soon find his feet and show his true colours.
Thomas Partey joined Arsenal on deadline day in October 2020 after they triggered his €50m release clause. The midfielder moved from Atletico Madrid, while Lucas Torreira went the other way on loan. But neither move has particularly worked out.
Indeed, the 28-year-old Gunners star has struggled with injuries since moving to England. He was even criticised by Mikel Arteta last season for his role in a goal Arsenal conceded.
However, after almost a year at Emirates Stadium, it seems the best is yet to come for Partey. Indeed, he produced arguably his best display in a Gunners shirt on Saturday as Arsenal edged to a 1-0 victory over Burnley at Turf Moor.
And after the game, it would not doubt have done Partey good to hear some wholesome praise from his manager.
Arteta told Arsenal’s official website: “He’s really important because he is the anchor.
“He is the one that needs to read what is happening and make the rest better.
“That’s his biggest job, to get the right balance in the team and get the right fluidity in the team so we can attack.”
Now, assessing that display, pundit Danny Murphy is adamant that Arsenal have a brilliant player on their hands.
“I have seen a lot of Partey,” Murphy said on talkSPORT.
“I don’t think yet people who don’t know enough about him have seen the best of him.
“He is a really powerful intelligent footballer who is influential in that middle of the park in terms of protection of those back players.”
Partey told to break out of ‘Arsenal mode’
Speaking last season, another pundit, Jamie Redknapp, reckons Partey needs time to adjust to his new surroundings.
“It’s been tough for him, he’s had injuries. He’s been in his first season in the Premier League and we have to give people time for the adjustment,” Redknapp said.
“Some just come to the league and they just thrive. Others find it really difficult. I’m going to give him the benefit of the doubt.
“There have been games where I watched him and thought I would have hated to play against him.
“He’s got all the attributes. But there are other times when he gets into what I would call ‘Arsenal mode’, where everything’s easy. I don’t want to see him like that. I want to see him high energy in that midfield running games.”