Arsenal’s swift move for Ghana international Thomas Partey has been touted a bigger success than multiple arrivals at Manchester United.
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta believes Partey’s arrival will certainly bolster the club’s midfield this season.
“We have been watching Thomas for a while, so we’re now delighted to add such a high quality player to our squad. He is a dynamic midfielder with great energy. He brings a lot of experience from a top club that has competed at the highest level in La Liga and the Champions League for several years,” he told the Arsenal website.
“We’re very impressed with his attitude and his approach to the game. He’s an intelligent footballer and we’re looking forward to him integrating into our system and contributing to the progress we’re building at the moment at the club.”
While Partey was the big name arrival, Old Trafford welcomed veteran Edinson Cavani, Brazilian left back Alex Telles from Porto, Uruguayan 18-year-old winger Facundo Pellistri and Atalanta’s teenage winger Amad Diallo will join in January.
Club legend Gary Neville questioned the arrival of free agent Cavani, who gets his first English move at the age of 33.
“They need a striker, they need a forward. My emotion when I heard about the deal on Saturday was the same probably as when Radamel Falcao signed, when Zlatan Ibrahimovic signed, Odion Ighalo signed. It’s very last-minute, it’s come out of nowhere,” Neville said on Sky Sports.
“There is an element of thrill to it, an element of intrigue because he is one of the world’s best strikers in the last 10 years. You hope he can come to Old Trafford and set the Premier League on fire.
“There is also an element of ‘how have we ended up here?’
“I hope he comes fit, firing, he’s always worked hard, always had a great attitude and work ethic, so I don’t think there’s any doubt about that. He’s not the type, I don’t think, to come for a swan song or a pay off, I think he’s got more about him.
“We had great tussles against him with England and obviously I’ve seen him for Paris Saint-Germain. I don’t think he will come with any aim other than to try to prove himself. It’s just a case of I don’t think this was in the strategy, I don’t think it was in the plan and certainly couldn’t have been because something like this couldn’t have been kept quiet.”
Whether Arsenal can continue to convert their fine work in the transfer market to on-field successes remains to be seen while Manchester United arguably face a bigger challenge to turn around the funk that seems to have surrounded Old Trafford.