THE man labelled ‘The new Vieira’ had a shocker in front of the old one.
Thomas Partey is lucky he does not play for Crystal Palace.
You could not imagine their manager and Arsenal legend Vieira being too chuffed with his display against the Eagles.
Partey capped a miserable performance by being at fault for Palace’s equaliser five minutes after the break.
The Ghanaian was criminally caught in possession in his own half by Jordan Ayew who then fed Christian Benteke to fire home to make it 1-1.
It was not the only mistake in another lacklustre display by Partey who has epitomised the Gunners’ inconsistency since his £45million switch from Atletico Madrid a year ago.
He was dubbed “The new Vieira”, but he is not a patch.
As Vieira showed in his playing heyday, the midfield general role is arguably the most important in the team. It is the control centre of any side.
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But Partey simply does not command enough matches. He certainly was not in command against the Eagles as their midfield left him chasing shadows.
He is a one in three man at best and at a club like Arsenal that is simply not good enough.
How they need an anchorman like Vieira – the captain of their 2003-04 Invincibles team – in their ranks to pull the strings and thwart opponents.
Partey and his team-mates lost their way badly after taking an eighth minute lead through Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Palace’s second goal by Odsonne Edouard was also the result of a Gunners midfielder losing the ball, this time sub Albert Sambi Lokonga.
Make no mistake, Arsenal got lucky with Alexandre Lacazette’s last-gasp leveller.
After a sticky start, Vieira is starting to impress as a manager in the same way he did as a player.
If things continue like this for both teams, it will not be long before he is being touted for the Gunners hot-seat.
Palace’s travelling army taunted their hosts by singing: “Vieira’s right, your fans are s***e!”
Their midfield weren’t too clever, either.