Relapse? Did Thomas Partey return to the team too early?

Arsenal’s massive signing on deadline day of Atletico Madrid’s Thomas Partey was supposed to be one of the big missing pieces of Mikel Arteta’s tactical jigsaw, but things haven’t worked out too well so far.

After returning from the international break, he was rushed into the Arsenal first team, and after three games in quick succession, the Ghana international broke down in our disastrous game against Aston Villa and had to taken off.

It was first thought to be just a light thigh strain, but he was kept out of the side for a whole month before returning yesterday against Tottenham, and sure enough he didn’t even last the whole of the first half. He was obviously in pain when he walked over to Mikel Arteta on the touchline to tell him the problem, but his timing was awful and he left our defence exposed for Spurs second goal.

Arteta saw the danger and tried to push Partey back into the fray, but he was too late and too slow to stop the goal. Once Arteta understood the problem, he replaced Partey with Ceballos.

The boss told after the game: “I haven’t seen the action repeated. But it is an injury and it is in the same area unfortunately. We don’t know how bad it is. I was trying to push him but I don’t think he realised the gravity of the situation when he left his position but that was probably because he was in a lot of pain. It’s nothing we can do at the moment to resolve that.”

So now we need to ask if Partey was given enough time to return to match fitness by Arteta, and if a month wasn’t enough to recover from the injury the first time around, will Arteta have to be extra cautious and not rush him back so quickly this time?

With the glut of games coming up in the next month, we are really going to miss Arteta’s star signing who was supposed to revitalise our ponderous midfield.

Poor Arteta is not getting many breaks at the moment, is he?

Tags Arteta Partey tottenham


  1. I feel like this question answers itself. He couldn’t even last 45 minutes. Another error by coaching staff and Arteta. Becoming recurring patterns…

  2. why do so many of our players get injuries? It was reported that Partey was hardly injured before he signed for us .Are our medical & fitness staff up to the job?

    1. the lack of time off and no pre season for any player, along with the sheer amount of fixtures being played, Internationals, all the cup games etc is resulting in more muscular injuries than ever before.

      then you have to bare in mind that all players were rushed back from lockdown after a 3 month break from proper training, it all adds up and now this is the result, its not just us its happening to, its happening to most teams

    2. It’s too much fixtures and much tackles with no one to take the pressure off him, Xhaka/Ceballos beyond average,

      Why ARteta isn’t giving Willock, Maitland-Niles, Nelson and Smith any chance certainly shows Arteta is shit,

      I am a big fan of ARteta but after yesterday, Arteta’s bullshit , why would he continue to use under performing players,

      I’m so pained.

      Playing in games is the only way to gain experience.

    3. We’ve changed full medical staff 3 or 4 times over the last 15 years i believe and we still have the same issues!

      I have heard that we do little to no weight/strength training compared to most teams….i think this could be a large part of our long term issues

      1. The women also have injury problems and Montemurro said the club are conducting a “massive internal review” of the situation…. must be an Arsenal thing!!

  3. Arsenal needs to put its house in order before it is too late,our current form is relegation form, we are better than 15th even with the current squard we have, Auba,Bellerin,Xhaka and Wilian are clearly struggling why continue playing them despite the negative results.

    1. @Dickson Hagoi: Not that simple really. When you commit to Auba with a hefty contract, prevent Xhaka from joining a German team and sign a washed up Willian for 3 years you can’t simply say you made a mistake and move on.
      It is what it is.

  4. Arteta doesn’t seem to know what he is doing. First he plays Luiz after a horrific head clash, r ushes Partey back. Any trainee coach wouldn’t do that. He is probably fit for league one, Not a team aspiring for champions league football. Unfortunately Arsenal will wait until we in relegation zone before firing this misfit.

    1. Give arteta till January and if things don’t change he has to go,
      It’s torture looking at them play under arteta,
      He is found out this season for his inexperience, if things carry on we won’t even get top 6.
      Why he plays Bellerin, xakai, willian is beyond me,
      In midfield nowadays you need pace and movement that’s why I think he should play a midfield 3 of Amn,willock,elneney….

      1. I agree with you here, I really do not understand why we still have Xhaka and Bellerin…we have Maitand Niles and Elneny who are better than the two.

  5. I’d pay £45m for a new team of physios instead of the players we brought in. You saw the title-chasing squads, they never had all their key members injured at the same time.

  6. This just sums our ‘luck’ up right now,
    It’s one thing after another… oh, and I just checked the last time we lost at home to Burnley was in 1974….

      1. I don’t like records like these when it comes to Arsenal.
        Especially when it’s announce prior to a game😥

  7. Suddenly everything looks and sounds doom and gloom. What did we do to deserve this?
    We hounded Arsène Wenger out when we had no proper succession plan in place. That’s what.
    God help us.

  8. It’s easy in hindsight to suggest that Arteta erred big time in playing Partey yesterday, but on this occasion I feel fans have every right to feel aggrieved.The fact that we were playing our arch rivals seems to have influenced Arteta to take a risk which has rebounded on him and the team.Surely he should have taken the opportunity to break him in gently for say 45mins against Dundalk in preparation for the important match against Burnley.Now we could be without our major midfield asset for up to two months according to reports,as yet, unconfirmed.Speak about creating unnecessary problems this one takes the biscuit because in the likes of AMN, Willock and Elneny, we have three midfielders who ought to have started against Spurs in any event.Being Manager of a Club where expectations are high, is a demanding job, and regrettably ,after his promising beginning, Arteta ‘s decision making is being questioned, and with justification.I sincerely want him to succeed but he has to make changes where they are clearly required to get us out of deep water.

    1. True Granddad, it pains me to see Arteta making the same mistake every week and getting the same result. This guy never learn, at Old Trafford he got the line up atleast better, why change that then?? Xhaka and Bellerin are past it and the sooner we accept that the better for our beloved team.

  9. I’m sorry, but Ireally can’t put the blame on MA for starting the player.
    He has a highly paid medical team, who monitor our players ona regular basis…and when was the last time we brought a player back from injury, only for said injury to recuur withn 45 minutes of starting a game?
    Also, the player himself was involved in the decision and must have been asked about his views as to whether he was fit to be selected.
    Mikel can only be guided by theses two factors and the fact he trained well before the game.
    I take Grandad’s point that he shoudl have been given some playing time on Thursday, but imagine the outcry if he had broken down in that game!!
    What I do blame MA for though, is his choice of leaving out Elneny and AMN, while selecting the out of form Willian and Xhaka.

    Would it have made a difference?
    Who knows, but I believe Partey, Elneny and AMN would have been able to share the workload in the midfield much more easlily than with Xhaka and Willian.

    As for Partey deciding to excuse himself from the field of play, he must have been in real agony and knew the problem…to push him back on to the pitch was a another moment of madness by our under pressure manager.

  10. It wasn’t Partey putting pressure on Arteta to start the game it was the other way round.

    Our left side is quite decent in attack and defence. It’s the whole right side that needs working. Bellerin, Willian and Pepe need to be out of team for a while. No awareness defensively and hardly create anything. Pepe and Williamn cant even pass first defender with corners.

  11. Common sense would have told a clear headed manager not to rush Partey back. The derby is big game for Arsenal but it’s still early on in the season. As a former player Arteta should have known better because a short term problem can turn into something more serious which can also affect the player’s confidence. This was a bad look on Arteta’s part demonstrating panic as well as how little confidence he has in the other midfielders.

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