Home Team news Mikel Arteta provides update on Thomas Partey’s fitness, Emile Smith Rowe and...

Mikel Arteta provides update on Thomas Partey’s fitness, Emile Smith Rowe and Gabriel Jesus return ahead of Aston Villa’s clash. 

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta attends a press conference at London Colney in St Albans, England. (Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

Mikel Arteta has provided an update on Thomas Partey’s fitness ahead of his Arsenal side’s game against Aston Villa this Saturday.

Partey missed Manchester City’s win over Arsenal on Wednesday night due to a muscle injury, which resulted in Arsenal fans worrying that he may be out for a significant period of time, given his track record when it comes to injuries.

Thomas Partey’s fitness
Mikel Arteta says he’ll decide late on Thomas Partey’s fitness whether or not he’ll be part of Arsenal’s squad to face Aston Villa on Saturday.

The Ghana international missed Wednesday night’s 3-1 defeat to Manchester City with an ill-timed thigh issue and was replaced in the starting lineup by new signing Jorginho.

“We have to assess him again today, he had some discomfort, a little muscle discomfort. We have to assess him this morning and see how he is,” said Arteta in his pre-game press conference on Friday morning.

On the plus side, it sounds like Emile Smith Rowe is set for a return to the squad for the first time since January. The England international suffered a setback in his recovery from groin surgery but is back in full training.

Gabriel Jesus and Emile Smith Rowe of Arsenal before the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Brentford FC at Emirates Stadium on February 11, 2023 in London, England. (Photo: Getty Images)

“Emile will be training today, if he’s fine he’ll be in the squad. And Gabby [Jesus], he’s still not there,” confirmed the boss.

Arsenal are currently on four-game winless run, with the defeat on Wednesday saw the Gunners fall off top spot for the first time since August. And Arteta is demanding more efficiency to return to the form of earlier in the campaign.

He added: “Obviously you want to get maximum points and we didn’t in the last three games. We have to look at ourselves as well, we have to be more efficient for the amount of play and situations that we’ve generated. “We haven’t had enough points and that’s down to us. We have to improve that because we want to win more games.”

Arsenal come up against former boss Unai Emery for the first time in a domestic match since he was sacked in November 2019.

Arteta is expecting a tough game and is full of respect for his Spanish compatriot. (Getty Images)

He said: “Well he always puts a difficult test. A very, very good manager, huge respect for him for what he’s done in every club that he’s been at, the success that he’s had. So big respect for him.”

Previous articleErik Ten Hag sends out title race warning ahead of Leicester match. 
Next articleEmerson Royal welcomes Pedro Porro’s arrival as he promises to put up a ‘good fight’.