Mikel Arteta gives injury update on Gabriel Martinelli for Arsenal fans

Emile Smith Rowe celebrating his FA Cup goal with Pierre Emerick Aubameyang

Arsenal brought in Thomas Partey during the summer to be the pillar in central defence but all he's done so far is spend time inside the medical room.

It was hoped that the 27-year-old would add much-needed steel and determination to Mikel Arteta's line-up, but injuries have disrupted his start to life in north London.

Some at Arsenal wanted Holding to leave The Emirates on loan in the summer in order for him to play more regularly, but Arteta intervened and that decision is starting to pay off.

Partey was sidelined with a thigh issue after a 3-0 defeat to Aston Villa on November 9, and made an unsuccessful comeback during a derby loss to Tottenham the following month.

With replays off the agenda in this year's FA Cup amid the congested fixture schedule, the game went to extra time and in the 19th minute of the additional period, the game finally had its breakthrough, Smith Rowe striking low past Martin Dubravka from a narrowing angle following a flick on from Alexandre Lacazette.

"We knew how tough it was going to be, they're a tough opponent".

'We are all very happy that Rob has signed a new contract, he is very popular with all the players and staff and we're looking forward to watching him continue to grow with us in the coming years'. "He's really good at the moment".

The Gunners defender joined the club from Bolton Wanderers in July 2016, making 96 appearances and winning two FA Cups, and he definitely deserves the new deal.

Arsenal followed up that result by beating Brighton and West Brom, and they are now sitting just six points adrift of the European places in the top-flight standings.

Next up for Arsenal is a home game against Crystal Palace.



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