Arsenal missing three midfielders ahead of Villa clash

Every Arsenal fan and his dog has been clamouring for Arsenal to buy another midfielder all summmer, but we are yet to see one coming through the door. Now here we are, just 36 hours before the end of the transfer window, and not only are we still waiting, we are being told that we we are going to be missing three of our four central midfielders going into tonight’s Premier League clash at home to Aston Villa.

We found out that Mo Elneny carried on playing after being injured against Fulham, and it looks like he will be out long term…..

Now, in the pre-game press conference, Mikel Arteta has acknowledged that Thomas Partey won’t be ready to play, and in the absence of Partey, the next backup midfielder Oleks Zinchenko is also not going to be available for selection either.

When asked about whether Oleks or Thomas would be recovered, Arteta said: “I don’t think so. We still have to make another scan, especially on Thomas, to see the length but I don’t think they will be available. It is a similar area [to the one that kept Partey out last season], but hopefully not as bad.”

It will be interesting to see how Arteta will tweak the team tonight, but the only solution I can see is if Lokonga plays alongside Xhaka, but right now we are all desperately waiting to see if Arteta can bring in another midfielder before the end of the window….


Mikel Arteta talks about Odegaard, Nketiah and bloody injuries ahead of Aston Villa game.

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Tags Elneny Partey Zinchenko


  1. Yeah, Sambi-Lokonga would likely play the CDM role today. Hopefully he’s fixed his inconsistent first touch

    Maitland-Niles will move to Southampton, so I bet we’ll sign a senior DM soon

    1. “so I bet we’ll sign a senior DM soon”

      We’ve only been waiting since 2008 for that to happen.

        1. Nonsense . He is a box to box. We have not had a DM of real quality since Gilberto, in”ancient years past”!

    2. Gai really how soon?
      The window will close tonight. May be if we fail to win against Aston villa Edu and the board would be forced to buy a DM before midnight. But I don’t see us loosing. I am yet to understand the brain behind buying P..Veira when Arteta actually need a DM. Pathey”s injury concern is not new to anyone. With the Midfielders we have, injuries concern and playing in Europa it will be a luck to make top4 this season. May be if January is not too late.

        1. @Pat
          I am a passionate Arsenal fan. I remain hopeful of a good experience midfield signing to stand in for Pathey. And may be a winger to challenge Saka or else Maquinho should step up.

      1. I think Arsenal considered three CDMs are enough and we still have Azeez/ Akinola in the reserve. I guess we’ll sign Tielemans or Arthur soon

      2. I agree with you. Arteta was wrong to let Bissouma go to Tottenham. He could play DM, CDM and AM, and is EPL quality and battle hardened. After 3 years Arteta has not learnt that Partey cannot be trusted; that’s myopic on his side. Man City and Liverpool thrive by having two top class players in each position, That’s a lesson he must begin to apply going forward. if Tielemanns is overpriced, gey Florian Nehause from M’gladback

    3. Yesterday, just yesterday, you wrote “I bet we won’t sign anyone and will depend on Sambi-Lokonga/ Azeez until Partey and Elneny become fit again. We also still have Akinola who hasn’t been tried out in the cup matches yet”.
      I guess betting that we wont sign anyone and then betting that we will sign someone provides 100% probability of having one correct statement.

      1. And to add to the discussion, in my opinion we are looking to strengthen two positions, CM and RW, but many factors are being considered, just like the Vlahovic chase in January. Financial constraints might make only one of those positions possible to be covered in this window, but both are certainly needs that have been identified. The approach here (with which i completely agree) is that we are only willing to sign players that have been identified as suitable replacements/improvements to our starting eleven and if none is available on this window, we will wait and have the positions covered from existing players (Nelson/Marquinhos and Lokonga).

  2. I think the AMN train has sailed, so there are really only 2 options.

    Either Sambi steps in for big Mo or we move Odegaard next to Xhaka and introduce Smith-Rowe in the 10 or Fabio Vieira, but I have a feeling Vieira won’t be seen in the PL soon for some reason.

  3. A bit out there, but howabout giving Tommi a try as a deep playing midfielder, or Ben White for tonight’s game?

    No harm in trying because it is what it is for the Villa game.

  4. I just hope he is not making the same old mistakes, when it seems we can actually compete, we find ourselves one or two players shot, our mieldfield is too light at the moment, we definitely have to bring in solid players not wengeresque panic buying, wonder why they went through the whole summer without getting an alternative to partey when it was so obvious his absence ruined our champions league qualification

  5. We didn’t sign Bissouma….what a f*&* up. Without filling the DM or at least CM position, forget big things. We still have a chance is we get a decent DM/CM and a Forward, in case of a problem with Jesus. If we don’t deal with these issues NOW, then hopeful bubbles will get burst. Don’t f*&* the window up like the January window was f*&*&*& up. Life is based on reality and not hope.

    1. Lol it sounds like your life is based on reality. Does that include having a glass half empty and FFP? Is not getting 5 new players and Saliba not enough for one window?

      1. Admin Pat.
        If we don’t have the squad we factually need for over 50 games, then later in the season we will fall away…like not buying during the January window of last season. I ‘m sure you can work that out on your own.

      2. Well Admin, if only edu can learn how to sell as well instead of handing over free contract terminations we wont have to worry about FFP. We signed 5 players, two are really cheap, two are below avg market price and one is at avg market price. If we can not get more player because of these signings then we should not call us a big club. Have we become so small that spending 117 million has broken our balance book.

        1. @Logic
          “Have we become so small that spending 117 million has broken our balance book.”
          LOL it would break mine. Are you that rich it wouldn’t break yours?
          Here is a fact…. Arsenal’s GATE RECIPTS for the WHOLE year was … Arsenal | £96 million (€112m)
          How much can you expect to spend?

          1. Gate receipt what about tv rights also sponsors and so on arsenal have the money and need to spend more to get what they wanna achieve

  6. Ben white can do a job as DM and with tomi back fit that would make sense to play him there. Still time to bring in a player if needed but has to be exceptional rather than just another body.

  7. Ben White has an eye 👁 for good passes, dribbles and marks well, he fits the DM role, I hope Arteta gives him a chance, I believe this is why we buy versatile players,

    We can’t afford to make Aston Villa look like Bayern .

    1. I was thinking that too.
      Put Tommy at RB and have Ben as DM. I think he’s even played there for B&HA.

    2. Posted on the other article today on the team news but yest I largely agree that Ben White should be deployed as a DM, atleast if we were to play against the big 6, in the absence of a natural DM. It gives Tomi a chance at RB where Ben is not a natural anyway. Ben will get his playing time and could really go into the DM role.

      I find it fascinating how some of the clubs outside the top six have managed to buy some brilliant young players – the likes of Leeds, Saints and Wolves in particular. I think players like Aaronson, Nunes, Kotchap are all terrific players!

      I understand that Leeds have joined Saints today in bidding for Cody Gakpo who is another promising player. I thought Arsenal would be interested in him to provide competition for Saka. But I realize that could potentially stifle the growth for Nelson and Marquinhos.

      Bellerin looks set to terminate his contract and AMN looks set to move by deadline day. Whilst this now looks like a squad that Arteta has put together, we could do with one more player in the middle of the pitch. Unsure if there are many suitable players available with just over a day to go but fingers crossed there is a plan!

  8. I feel the best option is to try White as DM against Aston Villa to access him in that role subsequently. Lukonga is unreliable as DM

  9. how on earth so yu want arteta to sign bissouma, making three africans in our midfield,so when is call up time for africa nations cup……what will nw happen to us

  10. I don’t know why ppl thing Ben White is the next super star DM in making. Dude has no vision, can not play long balls, slow, bad passing range, avg ball control and does not have quick feet. Just because he played DM role for a bit for poor Brighton does nit mean he is well equipped for the role. We should Xhaka back to DM and play Vieira in Xhaka’s place. But new DM is a must as even Partey is not really a DM he is more B2B.

    1. I disagree – Ben is one of the better ball playing defenders in the PL. It’s his vision and ball playing abilities that he possess makes him a candidate for that DM role, much like what Casemiro used to do for RM, but not like Kante or a Fabinho who drive forward and are less defensively minded.

      Besides, he is only 24 and is mature beyond age. He doesn’t seem to get the credit he deserves. Never easy playing RB in the premier league and this boy has done that and is playing ahead of Tomiyasu, Cedric and other players who’ve played that position in Bellerin and AMN. Coaches and managers aren’t fools if they don’t see talent and ability. Clearly he can adapt and is versatile. He is also one of those players who has an engine and contrary to your views has good ball control for a natural defender.

      Finally, a poor Brighton? Are you kidding me? Xhaka is a terrible DM – he cannot be the guy shielding defenders and making tackles outside or insider the Arsenal box – for all the plaudits he’s getting now (that he fully deserves), he is best playing upfield than defensively. He is certainly not the ideal solution for the DM fix in my opinion!

      1. So you think Brighton are Man City lol!, When White was there Brighton was worse then what they are at the moment. It’s funny you think he can be like casemiro hahaha. I rest my case. By the way he was played as RB not ahead of Tommy, it was because Tommy was injured. If white was nit English you wont be singing his fake praise.

    2. Would agree on white but even so he’s still better than xhaka!!! The idea we don’t need another defensively minded midfielder beggars belief …

  11. I’d suggest we play a 4141 formation where we will need only a DM Xhaka could be the lone man this would give either smith Rowe or Vieira in the second AM role

  12. Two years ago I suggested Sander Berge of Sheffield Utd who invariably impresses me and is arguably the best player operating in the Championship.A compatriot of Odegaard who can speak for his credentials if need be.Apparently Liverpool are genuinely interested.

  13. I’d go 4-4-2.
    Eddie. Jesus.
    Martinelli. Xhaka. Martin. Saka.
    Tierney. Gabriel-Saliba. White.

  14. buy buy buy buy buy buy buy NO.we need noone. We are nor chelsea neither man und or the others who destroy football.
    ARSENAL IS DIFFERENT and thats why we are mad about her

  15. Ideally Tielemans would be useful…..for games he plays Xhaka can play DM. A two year contract for Antoine Griezmann may be a masterstroke. He is on another level.

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