The €45m signing’s tenacity earned him a cephalopodic nickname in Spain and he hopes he can live up to expectations

The eight-legged tattoo on Thomas Partey’s arm recalls a time when his gifts drew an unusual comparison. “I always say, if I would be an animal, I would be an octopus,” he says. “I remember when I was in Almería they called me ‘the octopus’ because I stole a lot of balls.”

Related: Thomas Partey: made at Atlético and now ready to break free at Arsenal | Nick Ames

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