Arsenal put in another impressive defensive display as they held Manchester United to a 0-0 draw on Saturday. Express Sport takes a look at four things Mikel Arteta will have learned from the result.
Thomas Partey solves 16-year problem
Arsenal have constantly been looking to find a combative midfielder ever since Patrick Vieira left in 2005 – and they may have finally found him.
Thomas Partey arrived on deadline day last summer and injury has prevented him from regular game time but now he’s up to full steam and looking every bit the player that Arsenal have craved for 16 years.
Having someone as reliable as Partey in the heart of midfield has given Arsenal’s forward players the confidence to drive forward with the trust that the 27-year-old will be there to clean up any counter attacks.
He’s also got an eye for a pass in finding his team-mates where Arsenal’s other midfield options over the years have struggled from deep.
Saka creativity missed
Bukayo Saka has been the main man at Arsenal this season, despite being just 19 years of age.
He was unavailable due to a hip issue and his absence was dearly felt in the attacking positions.
Manchester United looked exposed on a number of occasions but Arsenal were unable to make the most of the space.
Saka has shown, particularly in recent weeks, that most things run through him and they certainly missed his creativity at the Emirates today.
Kieran Tierney has been immense for Arsenal this season, but Mikel Arteta will be pleased to see that he has a more than capable back-up option.
Cedric Soares arrived at Arsenal to little fanfare last year and his permanent move raised more eyebrows.
The 29-year-old has had to settle for being a bystander this season, but he’s stepped in to prove his versatility in recent weeks with impressive performances.
He came up against his biggest challenge against Marcus Rashford and largely kept the England international quiet throughout the match.
Willian’s move to Arsenal last summer appeared to be good business at first with the winger arriving as a free agent.
He played a huge role in Chelsea’s success during his seven-year stint at Stamford Bridge, and that winning mentality was drastically needed at Arsenal.
The Brazilian was given his first Premier League start in over a month against United, but he lacked a cutting edge in front of goal.
With Bukayo Saka and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to return as well, Willian may well find less minutes in the near future.