Arsenal set to receive double midfield injury boost vs Nottingham Forest

  • Thomas Partey is closing in on a return to action
  • Partey hasn't featured since October
  • Declan Rice avoided major injury vs Crystal Palace

Declan Rice and Thomas Partey haven't played together since October
Declan Rice and Thomas Partey haven't played together since October / Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/GettyImages
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Arsenal are expected to have midfield stars Thomas Partey and Declan Rice both available for next Tuesday's trip to Nottingham Forest.

The Gunners signed £105m man Rice in the summer to complement Partey, but the Ghanaian has once again been struck with injury woes. As a result, the pair have worked in tandem on just four occasions this season.

While Rice has started every Premier League game since joining the club, Partey has been out of action since October after undergoing surgery to fix a groin problem. He wasn't called up to Ghana's AFCON squad as a result.

Rice, meanwhile, is a fresh injury concern after hobbling off with a hamstring injury in the 5-0 win over Crystal Palace on Saturday.


Arsenal set to receive double midfield injury boost vs Nottingham Forest

There were initial concerns regarding Rice's injury, but the latest reports suggest the midfielder was merely suffering from tightness and he isn't expected to miss any games as a result.

The Gunners have a bit of a break until they're next in action as it's the FA Cup fourth round this weekend.

The extended recovery time means Rice should be fine to start at the City Ground on Tuesday. Moreover, Partey is in contention to make the matchday squad for the first time since the October international break.

The midfielder has been pictured in training over the past couple of weeks and is finally closing in on a return to action. The Forest game has been earmarked as a potential return date for quite some time.

Partey shouldn't be expected to start, but minutes off the bench will certainly be welcomed ahead of a crucial run of fixtures which includes a Premier League bout with Liverpool and the start of Arsenal's Champions League knockout stage campaign.

The midfielder featured in an inverted full-back role at the start of 2023/24 as Arteta tinkered with his set-up, and it'll certainly be interesting to see how Partey and Rice co-exist. Will we see the double pivot as was the case in the FA Cup defeat to Liverpool, or will Rice take on more of a box-to-box role with Partey resuming in his natural position at the base of midfield?

No matter where he slots into Arteta's configuration, there's no denying that Partey's return is a huge boost for the Gunners.


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