If the sight of Thomas Partey pictures back in training doesn’t brighten your morning, I don’t know what will. Actually, I probably do. The news that Stan Kroenke had agreed to sell the club, or even that Mikel Arteta had decided it was best for the club if he moved on. Sadly, neither is happening any day soon.
So the next best thing is Mikel Arteta having a fully fit squad for the weekend. Thomas Partey has been a huge miss, as has Gabriel but it now seems they’re both ready to face Norwich City. Pepe, White and Lacazette too. Granit Xhaka is banned of course but I can’t imagine too many tears have been shed over that.
Takehiro Tomiyasu plays for Japan later today, 4pm UK time so at least he’ll have a few days at the club before the weekend. A long flight from China beckons soon after the final whistle blows. Ten hours in the air I think but he should be used to it, certainly the recovery process too after playing for Bologna for a couple of seasons.
Takehiro isn’t the first Japanese player signed by Arsenal but he might be the first to do something more than just sell shirts in Asia. Takuma Asano’s move to north London was little short of a disaster, Junichi Inamoto faired a little better with three appearances for Arsenal, albeit not in the Premier League but poor old Ryo Miyachi managed just one run out in a Cup match.
Not Japanese, but from the same continent, Park Chu Young arrived in the summer of 2011. A funny story comes with his arrival at Arsenal as he was reported to be half way through a medical with Lille when he was made aware of Arsene Wenger’s interest in him. He subsequently quit the medical and hot footed it to London. That’s how the story goes at least. He appeared seven times in an Arsenal shirt and not all were domestic cup matches.
I’m sure Takehiro Tomiyasu will sell many shirts, certainly back in Japan but I’m quietly confident his Arsenal career will be a lot more successful than the Asian players Arsenal have signed previously. I know, that won’t be difficult!
At least he can defend…
Se3 you in the comments.