Mikel Arteta had decided on Arsenal’s next signing after Thomas Partey deal

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta reportedly wanted one more midfielder to join the Gunners after a deal for Thomas Partey was secured. Houssem Aouar emerged as Arsenal’s top target in the final few weeks of the summer transfer window.

They had a bid rejected by Lyon though with Aouar going on to state his intentions to remain in France.

That led Arsenal into paying Partey’s £45million release clause on deadline day.

And the Ghana international has impressed since making the move to London, although he’s currently out injured.

But it appears as though Arsenal had serious interest in signing another midfielder altogether.

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Arteta was keen to bolster his options in midfield with Jorginho emerged as a surprise target.

And The Athletic claim Jorginho was not seen as an alternative option to either Partey or Aouar.

Arteta and Arsenal’s backroom staff are said to be huge admirers of the Italian maestro.

But a deal could not be agreed as Chelsea were reportedly not willing to consider an instalment-based deal.

Arteta now has a decision to make for today’s game against Leeds with Partey out injured.

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“He picked up an injury very early in the game [against Aston Villa],” he said.

“He tried to carry on and he wanted to play the second half and we knew it was a significant injury.

“He has done really well, he is working very hard and he wants to be available.

“Hopefully we can get him back soon but it is an area where we have to be careful and a bit protective with the player.

While Partey is unavailable, there have been calls for Joe Willock to be named in the starting line-up.

And the Arsenal boss hinted the midfielder could be in line to face Leeds.

“I mentioned with Joe that I’ve been really impressed with him, the way he’s handled the situation of not having much game time in the Premier League,” Arteta added.

“I haven’t seen him train like he’s done in the last five or six weeks under difficult circumstances.

“I think the reflection of that is the way he’s playing in the Europa League when he’s had the minutes, or the Carabao Cup in this case.

“He has a chance like everybody else to play on Sunday.”

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