The former Gunners defender liked what he saw of the Ghanaian midfielder in the Europa League clash with Rapid Vienna
Martin Keown claims to see Patrick Vieira in Thomas Partey, considering Arsenal’s £ 45 million ($ 59 million) summer signing is “silky smooth” like its legendary predecessor in the Gunners’ engine room.
North Londoners have been looking for another standout player to put at the heart of their team.
World champions Vieira and Gilberto Silva once ensured these qualities when Arsenal celebrated winning the Premier League title under Arsene Wenger.
Mikel Arteta is tasked with regaining previous successes and the Spaniard is following a familiar blueprint.
He grabbed Partey from Atletico Madrid on the day of the transfer deadline. Keown saw an immediate return from the Ghanaian international, who stood out on his first start.
The former Gunners defense attorney said BT Sport After 27 years of control in the Europa League 2-1 win over Rapid Vienna: “I think you know when you see a player who immediately adds that touch of class, who wants to play and makes things happen. It’s so silky smooth, it has leaked class and has been everywhere.
“Here he looks like Vieira to me when he’s out with the ball and makes things happen.”
While Partey is an integral part of the present and future at the Emirates Stadium, midfielder Mesut Ozil appears to have been transported back in time after being excluded from national and continental squads.
Keown said of the German playmaker: “I find it very sad that he is a good player. When someone is this talented, it has to be an application – effort, not what they want. “
Arsenal want to move in a direction where Ozil is no longer involved. Arteta shapes a squad that was inherited from compatriot Unai Emery.
As part of this process, Emi Martinez was relocated to Aston Villa. Keown wondered if the right decision was made there, as first-choice goalkeeper Bernd Leno made a costly mistake in the hard-fought win in Vienna.
The ex-Gunners center-back said, “After you let go of Martinez who was great to see Leno make mistakes like this, you wonder if it was the right call.
“It was a difficult night for Leno. The team had their backs to the wall but showed very good character to get back in.
“Some changes have been made. I thought when they actually changed it and went to a back five, the pictures became more familiar to the players and they found a way to win that match. “
Arsenal will be back in the Premier League on Sunday when Leicester hosts.