As Arsenal suffers yet another setback due to injury, Thomas Partey’s stint on the sidelines will likely be extended.
The Ghanaian was ruled out last week, just before the Gunners defeated Manchester United 3-1 at the Emirates, with Mikel Arteta speculating he would miss “a few weeks” with a groyne issue. However, that prognosis was slightly premature as Partey was expected to be off for some time.
According to the Daily Mail, the 30-year-old is expected to be out for six weeks, with his earliest probable return occurring in October following the international break. This would disqualify him from crucial matches against teams like Manchester City, the favourite to win the Premier League title.
Along with missing the club’s first two Champions League games against PSV and Lens, Partey would also miss matches against Tottenham, Everton, and Bournemouth. It will immediately put pressure on Arteta’s squad, which is not the largest.
Due to their decline towards the conclusion of the season last season, a lack of depth was noted as a problem. Granit Xhaka and Albert Sambi Lokonga were both permitted to leave by the Gunners, despite Declan Rice’s club-record transfer cost and early promise.
Arteta though does still have the likes of Jorginho, Mohamed Elneny, Emile Smith Rowe and Kai Havertz who can all play centrally. Partey had begun the season in a surprise right-back role before Arsenal shifted back to more conventional personnel for the win over United.
The summer signing Jurrien Timber’s lengthy injured absence has already handed the Gunners manager a severe blow. The Dutch player, who came from Ajax, was forced to leave his opening weekend match against Nottingham Forest.
Arteta, who dealt with his fair share of injuries last season, is all too aware of how injuries can ruin a season. Eddie Nketiah stepped up wonderfully in the last third, and the team dealt with Gabriel Jesus’ absence admirably.
However, their decline in performance towards the conclusion of the season was timed with William Saliba’s departure. Following the Frenchman’s forced exit from a Europa League encounter and subsequent absence, Arsenal’s defence suffered.