Mikel Arteta explains how Thomas Partey can transform Arsenal’s season

Mikel Arteta believes the returning Thomas Partey can have a transformative effect on Arsenal’s season as the club’s headline summer signing prepares to make his eagerly anticipated return.

Partey is in contention to feature against Crystal Palace this evening and the 27-year-old’s return is only likely to increase the feel-good factor, according to Arteta.

Asked if Partey was capable of changing Arsenal’s dynamic, Arteta said: ‘Absolutely and because obviously we are able to watch him in training.

‘And who he is as well. I think he’s got a different presence. I think he brings something different to the team. ‘It’s not just about his talent it’s not, about his physicality, it’s who he is as a person.

He makes players better around him and that’s a big quality.

‘It’s incredible that we are in January, we signed him in the summer and we only played him twice. So, we haven’t really seen the impact that we believe he could have on the team. ‘Obviously, we have missed him.

On the other hand we’ve seen players stepping in as well. When that happens they give us some really positive news as well. But I think it’s going to be a big bonus if we can keep him fit.’