Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand has revealed how he wanted his former club to snap up Thomas Partey ahead of Arsenal. The Ghana international was in top form as the Gunners beat the Red Devils 1-0 at Old Trafford.
Thomas Partey’s special performance at Old Trafford has Rio Ferdinand lambasting the Manchester United board for not snapping him up ahead of Arsenal.
The Gunners mounted a 1-0 against their rivals – the first time in 14 years they have won away at the Theatre of Dreams.
And it came about after a mistake from Paul Pogba, who fouled Hector Bellerin in the box.
It allowed Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to score from the penalty spot while United had no answer going forward.
That was largely down to the mammoth performance Partey put on in the middle of the park.
And Ferdinand wishes the Ghana international was draped in the red of Manchester, not north London.
“You have to say well played to Arsenal,” Ferdinand told the FIVE Youtube Channel.
“Partey – what?! I said a while ago back in April or before that when I was talking about who United should buy – that was my guy!
“You have to give massive credit to Arteta and how they set-up. They absolutely pressured Manchester United, they pinned them back.
“They said: ‘We don’t even need to have the ball, we’re going to control this game without the ball’.
“They pinned them back and said: ‘you make the mistakes and we’ll feed off that.’
“United looked frustrated because they couldn’t get out. They didn’t get loads of big chances but Arsenal looked like the team that were on the front foot and were the aggressors in this game at Old Trafford.”
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer fielded a diamond formation – the exact same system he used just days before against RB Leipzig that saw them win 5-0.
But it seemed to play into Arsenal’s hands, who were happy to contain them in the middle of the pitch and prevented any width.
Crucial to the Gunners was Partey, who managed to keep the likes of Pogba, Bruno Fernandes and Donny van de Beek quiet.
But Gary Neville was critical of Solskjaer, saying he has too many midfielders.
“There are more problems than solutions,” Neville told Sky Sports.
“You have six midfield players at the club: Nemanja Matic, Fred, Scott McTominay, Bruno Fernandes, Donny van de Beek and Paul Pogba, and you’ve somehow got to get them into a system, which is forcing Ole to play a diamond.”