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Arteta reveals injury blow after confirming key Arsenal star will miss several games

By on December 10, 2020

Thomas partey

Mikel Arteta has provided an update on Thomas Partey and confirmed the midfielder will miss Arsenal’s ‘next few matches’ after aggravating a thigh injury against Tottenham.

Partey initially picked up the thigh problem during Arsenal’s defeat to Aston Villa in early November and was ruled out of action for our subsequent four games against Leeds Utd, Molde, Wolves and Rapid Vienna.

The 27-year-old resumed training earlier this month but was still considered as a major doubt for the North London Derby on December 6th as he had very little time to build up his fitness ahead of the game.

Despite his lack of preparation, Partey was still passed fit to start against Tottenham last weekend but he pulled up just before half-time [just as Tottenham made it 2-0] and had to be replaced by Dani Ceballos at the break.

Arteta confirmed at his press conference last night that Partey aggravated his thigh injury and while the Arsenal boss didn’t put a firm date on his return, he ruled the midfielder out of our ‘next few matches’.

The Spanish coach also defended his decision to start Partey against Spurs as he insists the player was ready to play after passing three fitness checks in the lead-up to the game.

Arteta told Arsenal.com:

on Thomas Partey…
He got injured in the same area, not exactly the same spot but the same area as before. He will miss the next few matches.

on whether it was an unnecessary risk to rush him back…
He did incredibly well and he was very confident. We tested him three times and he had zero symptoms, but in football you have a lot of unpredictable actions. He went into the floor, his knee got stuck, afterwards he stretched and got up. Immediately he put a lot of stress in a similar area and it happened. Afterwards people will say it was a bit early but I don’t think it was because he was completely fine to play.

Arteta can defend his decision all he wants but it was clearly a huge risk to rush Partey back and it backfired. He only came through one full training session after being out for a month and I said in my preview for the game there is no way we should have started him in a high intensity derby.

It was no surprise Partey aggravated the injury but it’s done now and Arsenal will be without a vital player during a very busy period. If he’s out for another four weeks – which is reportedly the minimum he’s looking at – then Partey could miss up to nine matches in all competitions, including huge league games against Chelsea, Manchester City and Everton.

It’s a nightmare situation that could have been easily avoided. And I can’t help but think Arteta wouldn’t have risked Partey if he wasn’t under so much pressure to turn our season around.

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