Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has been impressed with the way Thomas Partey has settled into life at Arsenal both on and off the pitch and claims the midfielder successfully ‘locked down’ Paul Pogba, Fred and Scott McTominay in the side’s win over Manchester United.
Partey’s full Premier League debut – following his £45million deadline-day move from Atletico Madrid – ended in disappointment as Jamie Vardy sealed all three points for Leicester at the Emirates.
But the 27-year-old shone as the Gunners travelled to Old Trafford last weekend and his statement performance earned rave reviews from supporters, pundits and team-mates alike.
Aubameyang, who scored the only goal of the game from penalty spot in the 69th minute, discussed the victory in the club’s matchday programme ahead of Arsenal’s Europa League clash with Molde – and praised Partey for the seamless transition he’s made into the team.
‘It was a great performance from the whole team and it was great to see Thomas Partey play like that even though he’s not been here long,’ Aubameyang said in his matchday programme notes ahead of Arsenal’s clash with Molde.
‘Off the pitch he’s a really humble guy and you can see that on the pitch as well because he really gives everything in the game.
‘He is really simple and quiet, so humble, and we all really like him.
‘He’s really funny too – sometimes he’ll do some jokes and we won’t be expecting it. So he’s settled in really quickly.
‘On the pitch his strengths are his energy and the way he can stop counter-attacks and dangerous situations. That’s really important for us.’
Pogba, Fred and McTominay all struggled as Partey dictated play in the middle of the park at the Theatre of Dreams and the Ghanaian’s display blew Aubameyang away.
The Arsenal captain added: ‘I think he locked down three of Manchester United’s midfielders on Sunday – that’s my point of view anyway – and that’s really important for us.
‘Also he can play forward really well when he regains the ball and that’s a good point for us.’
‘We play Molde tonight, and I have played against Norwegian sides before so I know their style of play,’ the Gabon striker continued.
‘We will study Molde closely before the game but we expect they will come here and go for the three points.
‘Europa League games can be very different to the Premier League but we have done well in our first two and I’m confident we can play well to beat them.’