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Arsenal linked with Roma midfielder Amadou Diawara (for the third consecutive season) as an ‘alternative’ to Thomas Partey. His agent tells me “they’re just words so far” #AFC : Gunners

A little bit frustrated by comments in this thread from people who clearly have never watched him play but already decided that he is

a. Not good enough for Arsenal and b. Worse than Thomas Partey

I’ve seen him play on numerous occasions in CL and Serie A for Napoli and Roma so I’d like to write a little about why I think he would be a fantastic signing.

He actually profiles as a very similar midfielder to Partey. Both are superb athletes, being equally tall, strong, and fast. They use that physicality to their advantage in and out of possesion by bullying players and combining it with intelligent reading of the game to effectively disrupt play and drive the ball forward on dribbling runs.

Their ball progression skills are fantastic too, as both are players capable of slinging vertical passes from deep to launch attacks and can use their strength on the ball to resist the press and play the ball out of the back in tight situations.

The main difference between the two is that Diawara plays deeper as a traditional 6, and therefore has a higher pass accuracy and gives the ball away less. Partey plays as more of a box to box in Atleti’s system which means he has slightly more influence in the final third and naturally results in him giving the ball away more often.

Both are excellent players and so long as the price is right I wouldn’t mind either, but given the fact that Diawara is 4 years younger, is in the perfect age range for our team, and would be cheaper which allows us to allocate resources to other positions (Attacking mid!), I would actually slightly prefer him.

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