Ghana midfielder Thomas Partey has revealed that his Moroccan girlfriend Sara Bella is the reason behind his conversion to Islam.
The Arsenal star divided opinion in Ghana when he changed religions in March but he has now explained that he did it because of the woman he loves.
🤣🤣🤣 Thomas needs a comedy show on TV pic.twitter.com/EsXzcy88wC
“I have a girl that I love but I hardly speak about it,” Partey said in a clip shared online by Ghanaian broadcaster Nana Aba Anamoah.
Anamoah probed further, “So, your girl is Muslim?” to which Partey responded, “Yes.”
She then asked Partey: “That’s why you have converted to Islam?” with the player responding, “I grew up with Muslims so at the end of the day it’s the same thing.”
The Black Stars vice-captain, who is not available for Ghana’s 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers due to a hamstring injury, went on to reveal that his Muslim name is Yakubu.
In March, Partey was pictured holding the Quran while standing next to a Sheikh in London, with multiple reports saying he had changed religion.
Thomas Partey has converted to Islam.
Congratulations, @Thomaspartey22! ❤️ pic.twitter.com/m3M4x2jbTK
The former Atletico Madrid midfielder is currently back home in Ghana enjoying his holidays as he continues his recovery.
He was in the stands on Wednesday to watch the Black Stars take on Madagascar, a match the home side won 3-0 to record their first victory in six months.
In Partey’s absence, coach Otto Addo fielded Idrissu Baba in midfield and the Real Mallorca man made the most of the opportunity, recording the most recoveries (10) against Madagascar while winning all his aerial duels.
Partey, whose goal sealed Ghana’s place at the 2022 World Cup following a 1-1 draw away to Nigeria in the playoff in March, was on Friday honoured for those heroics in his hometown of Odumase Krobo.
Arsenal Star Thomas Partey honored by his hometown with the title of “Mahefalor”. Was done by the chief of Krobo Traditional Area Nene Sakite II.
Mahefalor means ” Defender of Krobo Traditional Area”
Goal he scored that qualified Ghana to #Qatar2022 was particularly cited. pic.twitter.com/Te0lsZm15v
The midfielder was honoured with the title of “Mahefalor” which means ‘Defender of Krobo Traditional Area’ in a ceremony conducted by the chief of Krobo Traditional Area Nene Sakite II.
Partey, who made his debut for Ghana in 2016, has earned 40 caps for the Black Stars while scoring 13 goals.
The midfielder was enjoying a fine season with Arsenal before the injury in April during his team’s 3-0 loss to Crystal Palace at a time the Gunners were firmly in the race for the top four.
His absence coincided with Arsenal’s dip in form as they went on to lose three straight games, allowing Tottenham Hotspur to close in and ultimately deny them a place in next season’s Uefa Champions League.
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