There is a chance he could play before heading to AFCON – Arsenal coach on Thomas Partey

Arsenal manager, Mikel Arteta has revealed that Thomas Partey could make a return on the pitch before heading for international duty.

The Ghana midfielder has been on the nursing bed for the past two months due to a hamstring injury he suffered at the training ground ahead of the Gunners Champions League tie with Sevilla.

Partey started grass training this week but has not joined first-team training.

However, Arteta addressing the press ahead of their clash with West Ham United later tonight confirmed that the 29-year-old could return before heading to the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON).

The Spaniard also confirmed that Partey will not be in action against West Ham despite returning from injury.

‘We’re not going to have those two (Partey and Tomiyasu), then we have the suspension of Kai [Havertz], so I think we’re gonna have five out, but we have lots of other players willing to play.’

Addressing whether Partey and Tomiyasu will return before international duty, Arteta said: ‘There is a chance. We’ll have to see. They haven’t trained yet but hopefully they can evolve in the right way.’

However, the midfielder is expected to make an injury return on January 7 for the FA Cup tie against Liverpool.

Thomas Partey, who has made five appearances for the Gunners has been named in Ghana’s 55-man provisional squad for the AFCON tournament and it is likely the former Atletico Madrid midfielder will be named in the final 27-man squad.

Ghana, who are aiming to win the 34th edition of the AFCON have been housed in Group B alongside Egypt, Cape Verde and Mozambique.

The tournament has been scheduled to kick off from January 13 to February 11.

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