Thomas Partey

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Thomas Partey
Partey with Atlético Madrid in 2019
Personal information
Full name Thomas Teye Partey[1]
Date of birth (1993-06-13) 13 June 1993 (age 30)[2]
Place of birth Krobo Odumase, Ghana
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)[3]
Position(s) Defensive midfielder, right-back
Team information
Current team
Arsenal
Number 5
Youth career
2011–2012 Odometah[4]
2012 Leganés
2012–2013 Atlético Madrid
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2013–2020 Atlético Madrid 132 (12)
2013–2014Mallorca (loan) 37 (5)
2014–2015Almería (loan) 31 (4)
2020– Arsenal 95 (5)
International career
2016– Ghana 47 (13)
*Club domestic league appearances and goals, correct as of 18:11, 19 May 2024 (UTC)
‡ National team caps and goals, correct as of 03:53, 18 October 2023 (UTC)

Thomas Teye Partey (born 13 June 1993) is a Ghanaian professional footballer who plays as a defensive midfielder for Premier League club Arsenal and the Ghana national team.[5]

Partey began his professional career at Spanish club Atlético Madrid in 2013, going on loan to Mallorca and Almería, and returned to Atlético in 2015, with whom he won the UEFA Europa League and UEFA Super Cup in 2018, as well as appearing in the 2016 UEFA Champions League final. In 2020, he joined Arsenal in a transfer worth £45 million (€50 million), becoming the most expensive Ghanaian player of all time.

A Ghanaian international, Partey represented his nation at three Africa Cup of Nations (2017, 2019, and 2021) and the 2022 FIFA World Cup. He was named into the CAF Team of the Year in 2018, and won Ghana Player of the Year in 2018 and 2019.

Club career[edit]

Atlético Madrid[edit]

Partey with Atlético Madrid in 2018.

Born in Krobo Odumase, Partey was a product of local club Odometah's youth ranks.[4] He signed with Atlético Madrid in 2012, after a short spell with Leganés,[6] and was subsequently moved to the reserves a year later. On 10 March 2013, Partey was called up to the main squad for the match against Real Sociedad.[7] However, he remained unused in the eventual 0–1 home defeat.[8]

Mallorca and Almería[edit]

On 12 July, Partey was loaned to Mallorca, freshly relegated to the second level.[9] On 18 August, he made his professional debut, in a 0–4 away defeat against Sabadell.[10] Partey scored his first professional goal on 15 September, netting his side's second of a 2–2 draw at Hércules.[11]

On 27 July 2014, Partey joined La Liga side Almería on a loan.[12] He made his debut in the competition on 23 August, starting in a 1–1 home draw against Espanyol.[13] Partey scored his first goals in the main category of Spanish football on 11 April 2015, netting a brace in a 3–0 home win against Granada.[14]

Return to Atlético Madrid[edit]

Partey made his first team debut for Atlético Madrid on 28 November 2015, replacing Luciano Vietto in a 1–0 home win against Espanyol.[15] On 2 January of the following year, he scored his first league goal for the club, netting the game's only strike in a home success over Levante.[16] On 28 May, he played in the UEFA Champions League Final against Real Madrid, replacing Koke in the 116th minute as his side lost on penalties.[17]

Partey signed a contract extension with Atlético Madrid through 2022 on 14 February 2017.[18] On 31 October, he scored his first European goal with a long-range strike to equalise at home to Qarabağ in a 1–1 draw in the Champions League group game; he became the first African to score in the competition for Atlético.[19] Following his impressive performances for the club, he was rewarded with another contract on 1 March 2018, this time until 2023.[20] On 16 May, he played in the 2018 UEFA Europa League Final, as his side won 3–0 against Marseille.[21]

On 1 September 2019, Partey came on as a late substitute and netted the match's winner in the last minute of the game, as Atlético came back from 2–0 down to win the game by 3–2 against Eibar.[22] He marked his 100th La Liga appearance for Los Rojiblancos with a man-of-the-match performance in a 0–0 draw against Real Madrid in the Madrid derby four weeks later.[23] Despite leaving Atlético at the beginning of the 2020–21 season, Partey made enough appearances at the start of the season to become eligible for a winner's medal as Atlético won La Liga that year.[24][25]

Arsenal[edit]

On 5 October 2020, Premier League club Arsenal announced the signing of Partey on a long-term contract, after activating his £45 million (€50 million) release clause with Atlético Madrid. He was given the number 18 shirt, which had been vacated by Nacho Monreal the previous season.[26] Upon signing, Partey stated his desire to help Arsenal "back where [they] belong", describing his decision to move being based on "[wanting] to experience new challenges", while also crediting the transfer to manager Mikel Arteta and technical director Edu.[27]

On 17 October 2020, Partey made his debut for Arsenal as a substitute for Granit Xhaka in a 0–1 away defeat in the league against Manchester City.[28] Five days later, he started his first match for Arsenal in a 2–1 away win over Rapid Wien in the UEFA Europa League.[29] Midway through a match against Aston Villa on 8 November, he suffered a thigh injury which saw him miss the rest of the month's games.[30] He returned on 6 December in the North London derby, but suffered another injury at half-time as Arsenal lost 2–0 to Tottenham Hotspur.[31] He did not play again until a month later, which he came off the bench in a 0–0 draw against Crystal Palace.[32][33] On 22 October 2021, Partey scored his first goal for Arsenal in a 3–1 win against Aston Villa.[34] In February 2022, Partey was named Arsenal's player of the month.[35]

International career[edit]

In May 2016, Partey was called up for the first time to the Ghana national team by manager Avram Grant, ahead of a 2017 Africa Cup of Nations qualification match against Mauritius.[36] He made his debut on 5 June, replacing Frank Acheampong for the final 11 minutes of a 2–0 away win that booked the Black Stars' position in the finals.[37] On 5 September 2017, Partey scored his first international hat-trick in a 5–1 win against Congo in 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification.[38]

Partey was chosen in Kwesi Appiah's 23-man squad for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt.[39] In their last group game, he scored in a 2–0 win over Guinea-Bissau at the Suez Stadium as the Black Stars topped their group.[40] He netted in the penalty shootout at the end of the last-16 game against Tunisia on 8 July, though his team was eliminated.[41]

Partey won Ghana Player of the Year in 2018 and 2019.[42][43] Ahead of the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers, as well as for the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers, Partey was named Ghana's vice-captain.[44][45]

In November 2022, Partey was called up to the 26-man Ghana squad that would compete in Qatar for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.[46]

Media[edit]

Partey was involved in the Amazon Original sports docuseries All or Nothing: Arsenal, which documented the club by spending time with the coaching staff and players behind the scenes both on and off the field throughout their 2021–22 season.[47][48]

Personal life[edit]

In March 2022, because of his Moroccan girlfriend, Sara Bella, Partey converted to Islam.[49] In June, it was reported that he had changed his first name to Yakubu as part of his religious conversion, while remaining Thomas Partey both legally and professionally;[50] he said days later that he had changed his name back to Thomas.[51]

In June 2022, Partey was made a chief of the Manya Krobo people of the Eastern Region of Ghana by their paramount chief, Nene Sakite II, as a reward for captaining the team to 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification at the expense of neighbours Nigeria.[52]

Career statistics[edit]

Club[edit]

As of match played 12 May 2024[53]
Appearances and goals by club, season and competition
Club Season League National cup[a] League cup[b] Europe Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Mallorca (loan) 2013–14 Segunda División 37 5 1 0 38 5
Almería (loan) 2014–15 La Liga 31 4 1 0 32 4
Atlético Madrid 2015–16 La Liga 13 2 5 1 5[c] 0 23 3
2016–17 La Liga 16 1 2 0 6[c] 0 24 1
2017–18 La Liga 33 3 3 1 14[d] 1 50 5
2018–19 La Liga 32 3 3 0 6[c] 0 1[e] 0 42 3
2019–20 La Liga 35 3 1 0 8[c] 1 2[f] 0 46 4
2020–21 La Liga 3 0 0 0 0 0 3 0
Total 132 12 14 2 39 2 3 0 188 16
Arsenal 2020–21 Premier League 24 0 1 0 0 0 8[g] 0 33 0
2021–22 Premier League 24 2 0 0 2 0 26 2
2022–23 Premier League 33 3 1 0 0 0 6[g] 0 40 3
2023–24 Premier League 13 0 0 0 0 0 1[c] 0 1[h] 0 15 0
Total 94 5 2 0 2 0 15 0 1 0 114 5
Career total 294 25 18 2 2 0 54 2 4 0 372 29
  1. ^ Includes Copa del Rey, FA Cup
  2. ^ Includes EFL Cup
  3. ^ a b c d e Appearances in UEFA Champions League
  4. ^ Six appearances and one goal in UEFA Champions League, eight appearances in UEFA Europa League
  5. ^ Appearance in UEFA Super Cup
  6. ^ Appearances in Supercopa de España
  7. ^ a b Appearances in UEFA Europa League
  8. ^ Appearance in FA Community Shield

International[edit]

As of match played 17 October 2023[54]
Appearances and goals by national team and year
National team Year Apps Goals
Ghana 2016 5 0
2017 10 5
2018 4 2
2019 9 3
2020 2 0
2021 4 2
2022 9 1
2023 4 0
Total 47 13
As of match played 17 October 2023.
Ghana score listed first, score column indicates score after each Partey goal.[54]
List of international goals scored by Thomas Partey
No. Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 1 September 2017 Baba Yara Stadium, Kumasi, Ghana  Congo 1–1 1–1 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification
2 5 September 2017 Stade Municipal de Kintélé, Brazzaville, Congo  Congo 2–0 5–1 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification
3 3–1
4 4–1
5 10 October 2017 King Abdullah Sports City, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia  Saudi Arabia 3–0 3–0 Friendly
6 30 May 2018 International Stadium, Yokohama, Japan  Japan 2–0 2–0 Friendly
7 7 June 2018 Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland  Iceland 2–2 2–2 Friendly
8 26 March 2019 Accra Sports Stadium, Accra, Ghana  Mauritania 3–1 3–1 Friendly
9 2 July 2019 Suez Stadium, Suez, Egypt  Guinea-Bissau 2–0 2–0 2019 Africa Cup of Nations
10 14 November 2019 Cape Coast Sports Stadium, Cape Coast, Ghana  South Africa 1–0 2–0 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualification
11 9 October 2021 Cape Coast Sports Stadium, Cape Coast, Ghana  Zimbabwe 2–1 3–1 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification
12 12 October 2021 National Sports Stadium, Harare, Zimbabwe  Zimbabwe 1–0 1–0 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification
13 29 March 2022 Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja, Nigeria  Nigeria 1–0 1–1 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification

Honours[edit]

Atlético Madrid

Arsenal

Individual

References[edit]

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External links[edit]