Gilberto Silva: What I really think about Thomas Partey at Arsenal
Gilberto Silva delivers his verdict on the start that Thomas Partey has made to life at Arsenal
Gilberto Silva believes that Thomas Partey could be the holding midfielder that Arsenal have been needing for years.
The Ghana international signed for the north London side from Atletico Madrid in the summer transfer window last year as Mikel Arteta moved to bolster his defensive midfield options.
Partey struggled with a number of injury issues in his first few weeks at the club but he is now fully fit and has been a regular fixture in the Gunners first-team in recent games.
The 27-year-old played the full 90 minutes as he helped Arsenal to claim a 2-1 victory over Tottenham Hotspur in the north London derby on Sunday.
Partey has made one assist in 14 Premier League games for Arsenal so far this season and he will be aiming to hold down a regular spot between now and the end of the campaign as he bids to help the Gunners finish in the top four.
Former Arsenal star Gilberto has been impressed by what he has seen from Partey so far in an Arsenal shirt.
Asked if Partey is the best defensive midfielder he has seen at Arsenal since he left the club, he is quoted as saying by Metro: “I guess so. In my opinion, I agree with you.
“He’s a good player. He’s the type of player Arsenal were missing, I’ve spoken a couple of times about it.
“They have good players in the [central midfield] position but not to sit and give Arsenal the stability they have.
“Look at the game [against Spurs] it was great to see how he managed his game, how he managed that position, helping [team-mates].
“You know what is very important about this particular position? This is a very particular position because not every time you get the credit you deserve.
“That’s OK, it’s fine, because you have to understand that. But this guy, when he understands the position like Partey, look at his game: he made the others a lot better.
“He makes Xhaka look better in the game, he made the defenders look a lot better and comfortable when the ball was against them.
“I think the way he manages games, the way he positions himself, is very important for Arsenal. ‘He is the kind of player Arsenal have needed for quite a long time in my opinion.”
Arsenal will take on Olympiakos in the Europa League last 16 on Thursday night.