Arsenal: Arteta provides Partey injury update
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Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta fears Raphinha will wreak havoc in Sunday’s Premier League clash with Leeds United on Sunday, according to reports. The Gunners go into the game seeking a return to winning ways. Results have been poor of late, with the north London giants winning just one of their last five matches across all competitions.
Arsenal go up against Leeds looking to bounce back.
They’ve fallen apart in recent weeks, with the Gunners losing their last two matches against Wolves and Aston Villa.
Arsenal were also knocked out of the FA Cup, the competition they won under Arteta last season, by Southampton at the end of January.
Leeds won’t be easy, with Marcelo Bielsa’s side currently sitting above them in the Premier League table.
And Football Insider claim Arteta is worried about the threat Raphinha will pose in the showdown at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday.
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The 24-year-old has been in fine form this season, scoring four goals and registering four assists from 17 top flight matches so far.
Arsenal will be without Thomas Partey for the match in the capital, with the Ghana international continuing to struggle with injuries following his summer move from Atletico Madrid.
And it’s claimed that, with the Ghana international absent, Arteta and his coaching staff are ‘devising a set-up’ to deny Leeds space.
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Kieran Tierney will also miss the match.
And Arsenal are nervous about what Raphinha is capable of, with Arteta personally fearful of yet another bad result.
Meanwhile, Noel Whelan has reacted to that development and believes Arsenal are right to be fearful.
“Every team who faces Leeds now know they must stop Raphinha, which is easier said than done,” he told the publication.
“Will Arsenal be scared of Raphinha and what he can do? Of course they will. Every team is.
“Once he’s running at defenders with pace, he is almost impossible to stop.
“He’s not just quick and able to run with the ball at pace. He is superbly balanced, clever, has brilliant trickery, as we saw with what he did to Gary Cahill on Monday, and has a great range of passing.
“The way we play, always aggressive and attacking, means Raphinha gets lots of the ball and that will make it even harder for Arsenal.”
Meanwhile, Arsenal star Alexandre Lacazette is being linked with a move away from north London.
The striker’s contract at the Emirates is due to expire in 2022.
And Kevin Campbell thinks he’ll only be offered a new contract if Arsenal miss out on their top transfer targets, saying: “I truly believe Mikel Arteta has a plan for Lacazette and the team.
“Come the summer, it depends if Arteta and Edu can acquire the players that they want.
“What you do not do is cut your nose off to spite your face half-way through a season.
“It is important to remember that even in the summer, Lacazette will still be an Arsenal player.
“Lacazette’s new contract is probably dependant on whether Arteta is able to attract the players that he wants. I think it is smart management.”
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