Wright slams 'poor' Aubameyang and Partey in Arsenal draw at Brighton

Ian Wright slams ‘poor’ Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Thomas Partey in Arsenal’s draw at Brighton… and hints Alexandre Lacazette should have started instead because he ‘links the play better’

  • Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang failed to register a shot on target against Brighton 
  • Thomas Partey was booked at the end and won just two of his 12 contested duels 
  • The Arsenal duo were the most senior players on the pitch for Mikel Arteta’s side 
  • Ian Wright claimed they were poor and lamented the team’s inability to counter 

Ian Wright believes Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Thomas Partey delivered ‘poor’ performances at Brighton and lamented Arsenal’s inability to launch effective counter attacks in their goalless draw on the south coast.

Aubameyang, 32, and Partey, 28, were the two most senior players out on the pitch for Mikel Arteta’s men, but could not inspire their side to a fourth straight Premier League win amid sub-par displays. 

The Gunners captain failed to register a shot on target at the Amex Stadium on Saturday and was duly replaced with eighteen minutes of normal time remaining by fellow striker Alexandre Lacazette.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (L) and Thomas Partey (R) were ‘poor’ against Brighton, according to Ian Wright

Arsenal captain Aubameyang failed to register a shot on target during 72 minutes on the pitch

Partey meanwhile was booked right at the end of a match in which Opta claim he won just two of the 12 duels he contested, while Martin Odegaard was another leading figure who struggled and was replaced by Nicolas Pepe in the second half. 

Arsenal have scored just five goals in their seven league games so far this season – their fewest at this stage of a campaign since 1986-87 – three of which came in last weekend’s north London derby victory against Tottenham.

And Wright put their failure to add to that modest tally against Graham Potter’s men down to ‘an off day’ for Aubameyang as well as an off-colour game for the Ghana and Norway internationals. 

Midfielder Partey was booked at the end and won just two of the 12 duels he contested

‘It would be easy to get carried away with that result last week [the win over Tottenham] because they were fantastic but this was a very well-drilled Brighton side in difficult conditions and a very young Arsenal side,’ Wright said on BBC’s Match of the Day as quoted by The Metro.

‘I thought Aubameyang today, unfortunately, was poor, I thought Partey was poor. I thought Martin [Odegaard] didn’t play very well. We know what Brighton are going to do, we need to keep the ball and get the counter-attack going. We could not do that today.

‘Everything was bouncing off Aubameyang. When he got into opportunities he couldn’t quite get it out of his feet. It just wasn’t happening for him. It was an off day; we saw how sharp he was last week.’

Wright (R) also insisted summer signing Martin Odegaard (L) ‘didn’t play very well’ at the Amex

Opta have also revealed Lacazette completed six passes after coming on, the same number as Aubameyang, despite playing 54 minutes fewer than the Gabon striker.

And Gunners legend Wright hinted the Frenchman should have started due to his superior link-up skills, but still described the draw as a ‘fantastic point’ for a young Arsenal side. 

‘This kind of game suits him [Lacazette] more. He links the play better. We didn’t punish them and it was in those moments [on the counter] that we lacked quality,’ Wright continued.

‘In the end, I think it’s a fantastic point for Arsenal with the way the team is, it’s a young team, it’s a good point, it’s much better than I thought it would be in the end.’

Wright hinted that Alexandre Lacazette should have started instead of the Gabon striker

Arteta also insisted his side’s performance on the south coast did not merit three points.

‘I think it was a point gained because I don’t think we deserved anything more than that,’ said Arteta.

‘We did deserve the point because we defended really well the last 15 or 20 metres of our pitch.

‘But in the end we never felt in control of the game and we struggled to break their press and get a good sequence of passes and impose ourselves in the final third and they made it really tough for us.’

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