‘Let’s see’ – Arteta changes his tune about key man’s availability ahead of NLD

Image: SpursWeb

Mikel Arteta has admitted that Thomas Partey could be available for Arsenal’s trip across North London to take on Tottenham on Sunday after initially suggesting that the Ghanaian international was ruled out.

Arsenal invested significantly on the midfielder when snapping him up from Atletico Madrid in the summer transfer window. However, injuries have prevented him from hitting the ground running at the Emirates Stadium.

Arteta said after Arsenal’s 2-1 defeat to Wolves on Sunday that Partey was set to miss the next few games (Daily Mail).

The likes of Granit Xhaka and Dani Ceballos have been poor for the Gunners over recent weeks and Jose Mourinho may have relished his side’s prospects of coming against them on Sunday.

However, the Arsenal boss has now changed his tune and revealed that Partey is making good progress and is working hard to return as soon as possible.

While the Spaniard did not provide a clear return date for the midfielder, he refused to rule out the possibility of the 27-year-old being available for the North London Derby.

When asked if Partey could be fit for the clash against Tottenham, Arteta told The Express: “We don’t know, again he’s really pushing every day he’s trying to get around the doctors and the physio. He hasn’t trained with the team yet.

“So let’s see this week if he can get a session or two, assess him and scan him again to see the extent of the injury and how it’s healed.

“I know if it’s Thomas he wants to play tomorrow and then we have to see medically that he’s safe to run or participate this week at all.

“He’s been training separately in the last week or so we have to scan him again to see how he’s feeling. He’s a player that’s so willing that he’s pushing us every day because he wants to do it.

“At the same time we have to protect and make sure that when he gets back into the team, he’s ready to do that to whatever extent that we can use him.

“So this week is going to be crucial, the moment he’s going to start to train with the team to see how he’s feeling and how he’s evolving day to day.”

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