A relegation six-pointer is up next for Arsenal as Norwich head to the Emirates Stadium on Saturday for a must-win Premier League clash.
The situation is as perilous and gloomy as it possibly can be. While there are ‘excuses’ and ‘explanations’ behind all of the opening three fixtures so far, none of them mask the failings.
Arsenal are rock bottom of the table and they deserve to be there. Everything up until this point has been desperately below the ever diminishing standard that the club has set for itself.
Mikel Arteta needs help just as much as he needs to help himself.
Missing key players for all of the fixtures played thus far, the hopeful and expected returns of a few key men provide the manager with no more room to hide. Even now he’s visible from behind the curtain.
Thomas Partey facing race against time to feature for Arsenal against Norwich in huge Premier League clash for Mikel Arteta’s side
One of the major boosts to his side that supporters are anxiously awaiting is the return of Thomas Partey. Out with an ankle injury sustained against Chelsea back on August 1, the 28-year-old’s presence has been missed in the engine room with the midfield being cut through with ease in the matches played without him.
Playing no part in a behind-closed-doors friendly win over Brentford during the international break, football.london have confirmed the Ghanaian is still yet to partake in training with the rest of the squad.
Set to be back among his teammates ‘sometime this week’, the possibility of him either not being fit or not being risked for the weekend grows.
Having not played in six weeks by the time Daniel Farke’s side head to north London, Arsenal will know better than anyone else that rushing Partey back could have a detrimental effect on Arteta’s hopes of putting a run together that will claw them up off the foot of the table.
If he’s fit then he plays. Simple as that. But too often during his Gunners career has Partey not had the recovery time he’s needed upon returning and the possibility of another spell on the sidelines may well help hammer the final nail in Arteta’s coffin.
It’s a race against time.