Mikel Arteta given some unexpected good news as major Arsenal star set to return

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With games being postponed left, right and centre, allegedly for lack of numbers because of positive Covid cases, having major stars returning to the fold can only be seen as a positive at this stage.

Arsenal are one of the teams that have seen their matches called off, but the Gunners have seemingly also been struggling with injuries and players participating in the African Cup of Nations.

To that end, teams blaming all of their ills on the coronavirus pandemic is a convenient get out at this point in time.

In any event, the quicker that teams have players returning from international duty, injury, Covid or otherwise, the better.

Arteta has, therefore, had something of a stroke of luck with the news that one of his major stars will be available for selection much earlier than expected.

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However, don’t expect Thomas Partey to be happy about it. At all.

According to Opta, his Ghana side failed to win any of their AFCON group stage games for the first time in 23 appearances, and it’s also the first time since 2006 that they haven’t qualified to the knockout stages.

What’s more, the 3-2 defeat to minnows Comoros has to be seen as an abject humiliation for one of the favourites for the title.

The writing was on the wall as early as the fourth minute when El Fardou Mohamed Ben Nabouhane put Comoros ahead.

Andrew Ayew’s red card will have done nothing for Ghana’s morale, and just after the hour Ahmed Mogni incredibly doubled the lead.

Richard Boakye and Alexander Djiku soon had Ghana back on level terms, but the respite was brief as Mogni bagged his second five minutes from time and it turned out to be the winner.

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