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Thomas Partey: Essien is one of Africa's best

Sat, 14 Nov 2020 Source: goal.com

New Arsenal acquisition Thomas Partey has set his sight on replicating the success in England of compatriot and former Chelsea star Michael Essien.

Partey joined the Gunners in a sensational Transfer Deadline Day deal in September, signing from Spanish outfit Atletico Madrid.

Essien played for Chelsea between 2005 and 2014, winning eight major titles, including the Champions League.

"He [Essien] a fantastic midfielder. He fights for every ball, he's a great legend. For me, he's one of the best midfielders that we've ever had in Africa," Partey said, as reported by his new club's official website.

"I think we've all seen what he has done at Chelsea, what he has done for the Black Stars and for me, he's my idol.

"I grew up watching Michael Essien, [Sulley] Muntari, the Ayew brothers - they are the people I look up to and they made a lot of impact on Ghanaians. I think this is my moment and I have to make sure I take it.''

Winning the 2012 Champions League undoubtedly sits at the top of Essien's achievements with Chelsea. In addition, he clinched two Premier League titles, four FA Cups, one League Cup, and one Community Shield with the Blues.

"Now most of the young guys are looking up to me and I think I have to do my best to make sure I get them to support this great family [at Arsenal]," Partey added.

"When they support me, they're going to feel good when they see us play."

Partey, who won the Europa League in 2018 and Uefa Super Cup in 2019 - both with Atletico Madrid - has made a combined five appearances in all competitions for Arsenal so far.

The 27-year-old currently faces a spell on the sidelines after picking up a thigh injury while in Premier League action for the Gunners on Sunday, leading to his substitution at half-time.

His fitness setback has forced him out of Ghana's double-header against Sudan in the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.

It is currently unclear if he will be fit in time for Arsenal's trip to Leeds United on November 22 after the ongoing international break.

Source: goal.com
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