‘A dominant force’: Alan Smith raves about Arsenal new-boy Thomas Partey
Alan Smith has his say on Thomas Partey's impressive start to life at Arsenal
Alan Smith has lavished praise on Thomas Partey following his strong performance for Arsenal against Rapid Vienna last week.
The 27-year-old made his first start for the Gunners on Thursday night as he helped the north London side to come from behind and claim a 2-1 victory in their Europa League group-stage opener.
Partey produced an assured performance in midfield as he helped the Gunners to kick off their European campaign with a win.
The Ghana international will now be hoping to make his full Premier League debut for Arsenal when the north London side host Leicester City at The Emirates on Sunday afternoon.
Former Arsenal star Smith was hugely impressed by what he saw from Partey on Thursday night and he feels that the midfielder possesses a similar style to former Gunners captain Patrick Vieira.
Writing in his column for the London Evening Standard, Smith said of Partey’s performance last week: “He hardly put a foot wrong in a performance that showcased an impressive passing range that should encourage anyone in front to keep making runs.
“Holding midfielder? No, Partey is much more than that. He proved that emphatically with some incisive play that suggested a useful understanding could quickly develop with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
“Without wishing to get carried away, the way he bossed the game, Partey brought back memories of Patrick Vieira.
“For the first time since the majestic Frenchman’s time, the Gunners may now boast a dominant force in the middle of the park who can change a game as well as mix it physically.”
Arsenal, who have not won the Premier League since 2004, are aiming to try and break back into the top four this season after they finished eighth and won the FA Cup under Mikel Arteta last term.
The Gunners’ next Premier League game after their clash against the Foxes is their crunch showdown with Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday next weekend.