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Thomas Partey opens up on Arsenal future amid links with summer exit

Thomas Partey has responded to speculation over where he could be playing his football despite transfer links to Spain, Italy and Saudi Arabia. The Ghanaian international made his first start for Arsenal since August in yesterday’s 2-0 win over Luton Town. Speaking to after the game, he confirmed that despite the rumours, he looks at Arsenal as his future for now and is positive about being in North London. He said: “My head is always here. “This is where I choose to play, I'm really happy every time I'm on the field. I know a lot of speculations have been going on, but for me, I'm really happy to be here and to continue playing for this club.” Declan Rice has certainly made the midfield his own this season and the form of Jorginho has also propelled him ahead of Partey, especially for big games. How he performs in these remaining games could have a bearing on any club decision over his future. With one year remaining at the end of the season, the persistent injury problems suffered by the 30-year-old have left questions over whether he should be replaced. Links to the likes of Martin Zubimendi, Douglas Luiz and Joshua Kimmich have only created a bigger buzz over a midfield summer signing. Asked about his contract by reporters following a decent showing against Luton, he said: “Well, I still have to the end of the season, I think. I have to do my best and try to perform at the highest level and I think the most important is to be available every time.” READ MORE: Bukayo Saka absence answered as Arsenal learn new trick amid growing title race issue READ MORE: Why Mikel Arteta shouted at David Raya as Arsenal defeat Luton to go top of the Premier League There is little doubt that, if on form, Partey will offer Arteta plenty of midfield quality and competition for places. With some tough Champions League fixtures against Bayern Munich sandwiching some tricky Premier League games with Brighton and Aston Villa, rotation is going to be important, as it was last night against Luton. Arsenal managed, despite not putting on the most enthralling performance, to secure the three points without much bother. Bukayo Saka didn’t make the squad, while Rice, Jakub Kiwior, Gabriel Martinelli, Gabriel Jesus and Jorginho were able to take some time to sit on the bench, with some coming on late in the game. Whether Partey can break into the starting eleven again remains to be seen. However, based on an apparent keenness to stay, if Arteta wants to invest in another midfielder in the summer, Partey’s desire to stay could be tested.

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