Partey was heavily linked with a move to Arsenal over the summer transfer window, however, the midfielder’s €50 million (£45.3 million) release clause appeared to be a significant obstacle in the transfer, as reports suggested that Mikel Arteta’s side had ‘indicated’ they would not be willing to pay the clause.
In late Septemeber, Romano himself stated that Atletico were ‘not going to negotiate with Arsenal for Thomas Partey’ and that the LaLiga side were ‘convinced’ the midfielder would remain at the club.
Then, on October 5, with the 11pm transfer deadline fast approaching, Romano claimed that Atletico Madrid had not ‘received any attempt or bid from Arsenal’ for the 27-year-old, that the club were ‘still convinced’ the midfielder would be staying and that there were ‘no negotiations’ regarding a transfer taking place between the two clubs.
The transfer was one subject of conversation on a recent episode of the Here We Go podcast, with Romano discussing why he thought the deal would not go ahead.
He said: “I’m sorry [to] Arsenal fans, because I reported what was [the position of Atletico Madrid] but obviously, when you have a release clause, [their] position is not important. If [a player has a] release clause, you can have any position you want, but if [another club pays, they] get the player.
“And [Arsenal] arrived [around] 15 minutes before the deadline to sign the player, so [it was] crazy.”
Were you expecting Arsenal to get the Partey deal done on deadline day?
From Romano’s comments, it is clear that the journalist was truly unaware of Arsenal’s intention to activate Partey’s release clause so close to the transfer deadline, and, thus, why he claimed the move looked like it was not going to happen.