Mikel Arteta reveals why new Arsenal signing Thomas Partey was his priority transfer target

Arteta is delighted with Partey's arrival
Arteta is delighted with Partey’s arrival (Picture: Arsenal)

Mikel Arteta has admitted Arsenal were a ‘little bit short’ in midfield, and new signing Thomas Partey will fill that void with his strong personality and tactical versatility.

The Gunners activated Partey’s £45 million release clause on deadline day to bring Arteta’s top priority target in from Atletico Madrid.

The 27-year-old enjoyed five years in Atletico’s first team, getting to the Champions League semi-finals in 2015-16 and coming third in La Liga last season.

Partey arrives with plenty of experience behind him
Partey arrives with plenty of experience behind him (Picture: Getty Images)

With just Granit Xhaka, Mohamed Elneny and loanee Dani Ceballos the only other central midfielders in the squad, the Ghana international was a much-needed acquisition.

When asked why he was so keen on Partey, Arteta told the club’s official website: ‘We identified him a few months ago and we have been following his progress, and obviously the more you know about the squad, you know more about where you think you can improve it.

‘We believe he has the right qualities, with his character and his personality and as well with his technical qualities and positional options that he can give to the team.

‘I think he allows us to play different formations and he can fit in within those formations in different positions, which is a really good thing to have in a squad where, in midfield, I think we were a little bit short.

‘I have a few things in mind that I want to start to train with the team and [Partey’s signing] is going to give us a little bit more adaptability and more balance in defending and attacking transitions and the way we have to set up certain structures to attack better in certain moments of the game.’

MORE: Edu reveals how Arsenal’s owners reacted to Thomas Partey transfer move

MORE: Arsenal set to re-attempt efforts to terminate Mesut Ozil’s contract early ahead of January transfer window

Follow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

For more stories like this, check our sport page

No comments