Arsenal thrashed by QPR in behind closed doors friendly as first-team stars embarrassed – Sportstimes.info
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Arsenal thrashed by QPR in behind closed doors friendly as first-team stars embarrassed

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Thomas Partey and Takehiro Tomiyasu were part of an Arsenal team who were comprehensively beaten 4-0 by QPR in a behind-closed-doors friendly on Thursday.

Both Partey and Tomiyasu have been working their way back to fitness behind the scenes in recent weeks. Partey, 30, has struggled with injuries all season and has played just 41 minutes in total since August. Tomiyasu, 25, has been plagued by a calf injury but had managed to clock up 20 appearances in all competitions prior to the turn of the year.

It’s hoped that Partey and Tomiyasu could yet have a crucial role to play in the title run-in. Mikel Arteta’s side are top of the Premier League heading into the final weeks of the season ahead of Liverpool and Manchester City.

Partey and Tomiyasu stepped up their recovery by taking part in a private friendly match against QPR, who beat their top-flight rivals convincingly. Partey and Tomiyasu were the only first-team players involved for the Gunners, who had no fixture last weekend due to the FA Cup quarter-finals.

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It’s been outlined that Partey played for a full hour before being withdrawn as his recovery continues to be monitored. Tomiyasu, who signed a new contract earlier this week, completed 45 minutes of the match.

QPR, who are fighting to avoid relegation from the Championship, fielded a strong team and won courtesy of a brace from Michael Frey and further goals from Elijah Dixon-Bonner and Ziyad Larkeche at their new state-of-the-art training facility.

The majority of Arsenal’s squad are currently away on international duty, with the likes of Declan Rice and Bukayo Saka poised to feature for England in fixtures against Brazil and Belgium over the next week and a half.

Arsenal return to action at the end of the month when they travel to Manchester City in a match which will have major title ramifications. The Londoners are currently a point ahead of the champions in the table, with Liverpool behind them only on goal difference.

While Arsenal haven’t played since their dramatic win over FC Porto in the Champions League nine days ago, both City and Liverpool played in the FA Cup. Arteta was quick to dismiss any fears, though, that their lighter schedule could work against them.

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He explained earlier this month: “It is what it is. We knew that; it was an option and now we plan to use that time in the best possible way because that would mean that we’d then have a more congested period in April.

“The difference is three or four more days. We’re going to have two-and-a-half or three weeks [without a game] and I don’t think that that is going to change the world.”

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