Mikel Arteta has found Arsenal’s Granit Xhaka replacement amid huge Burnley decision

Thomas Partey is Arsenal’s best midfielder. As far as hot takes go, that is one that belongs in the North Pole, but it is an undeniable fact.

While the Gunners’ other central options have a tendency to play slow, sideways passes, the Ghanaian’s fast and forward approach is unique at the Emirates.

It was on full display once more against Norwich as his line splitting ball to Bukayo Saka proved pivotal to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s decisive goal.

Although Mikel Arteta was reticent to say whether Partey would be starting the next match against Burnley following his return from injury, an extra week’s training at London Colney should have left the 28-year-old in a position where he’s ready to play from the off. This leaves the Spaniard with a big decision to make.

Many remember Partey as the out-and-out destroyer he was deployed as during his time at Atletico Madrid, but the Ghanaian was lured to North London on the promise of being able to show how much more he is than that.

Moments like the one against Norwich prove what he is capable of, but to truly demonstrate his box-to-box capabilities the 28-year-old needs a deeper presence alongside him in the Arsenal double pivot.