According to the 25-year old, growing up in Ghana, where he was used to watching the English Premier League, he looked up to those players as his idols.
"As a child I watched many Premier matches. I saw a lot of Gerrard, then Yaya Touré or Essien. Any African footballer in my position wants to be like them," he told elmundo.es.
Partey has become an integral member of the Atletico Madrid team this season, despite a rough start to the campaign.
He has played 30 times in all competitions this season for the Rojiblancos. He played a key role in his side's 2-0 win over Juventus in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg in midweek.
Thomas Partey is also a key figure for coach Kwesi Appiah's Black Stars team that will heading to the AFCON 2019 in Egypt. Read Full Story