Essien Given A Major Disappointment

Former Chelsea midfielder Michael Essien has been given a major disappointment after being dropped from the Ghana squad for the upcoming African cup of nations qualifiers. After a disappointing World Cup 2014 in which they failed to qualify past the group stages, there is a lot of pressure manager Kwesi Appiah. One of the enigmas of Ghana has been Michael Essien. The former Chelsea midfielder has struggled for first-team action at club level in the last five years. He has suffered numerous injuries during this period and it even forced him to take a self-imposed exile from the national team.

Essien Could Be Headed To Russia

Former Chelsea star Michael Essien could be on his way to Russia after it has emerged that AC Milan are open to the possibility of using the Ghanaian international as a makeweight in the deal to bring in Domenico Criscito from Zenit St Petersburg. Essien was once regarded as one of the best midfielders, but a succession of knee injuries have made the 31-year-old as a fringe player. This led to his move to Milan on a permanent basis last January. Italian football was expected to suit Essien given that it was slow compared to the rest of the leagues.

Ghana Given Boost With Essien Return

Ghana have been given a major boost in their preparations for the second group G match against latest Germany with the news that former Chelsea midfielder Michael Essien has returned to training. The AC Milan midfielder has been suffering from numerous injury problems in the last five years. This even made him take a voluntary break from international football. However, his return has been a major boost for the national team at the World Cup 2014, although results have not been positive. They lost their opening match against United States 2-1.

Essien Failes Zanetti

Former Chelsea midfielder Michael Essien has failed Inter Milan captain Javier Zanetti, who announced his retirement from the game a few days ago. Zanetti is regarded as one of the legends of the club after having been playing in the top-level for them for more than two decades. During his stellar career, the Argentine represented the clubs and has played for more than two decades. Most of it has come for Italian Serie A Giants Inter Milan. Michael Essien has seen from close up the popularity of Zanetti.

APPIAH NOT UNDER PRESSURE

Former Ghana captain Stephen Appiah has requested the media not to put pressure on AC Milan midfielder Michael Essien, who recently sealed the free transfer to the Italian club. Essien is regarded as one of the best players to have represented in the Ghana National team over the last few decades. However, he has suffered from a succession of injury problems over the last five years and it has prevented him from featuring for the national team on a regular basis. In the last few years, though, he has been making a solid comeback from the injury troubles.

OPPORTUNITY KNOCKS

Michael Essien’s last few seasons with Chelsea was not the best of his career as he was being left out of a number of matches and had to settle with a place on the sidelines. His age was a factor that gave him a huge disadvantage as he had to battle for a place in the starting lineup of Jose Mourinho who preferred using some younger and faster options such as Oscar, Hazard or Nemanja Matic.

His lack of playing time with Chelsea ultimately led to him being transferred out to Ac.Milan as he signed a one and half year contract deal with the Italian club who currently are struggling trying to find a top 5 spot in the Serie A.

CHELSEA NOT HAPPY

Chelsea have been given a tough fixture schedule according to its manager José Mourinho, who has hit out at the organisers for scheduling Chelsea’s visit to Fulham just a few days after their Champions League match against Galatasaray.

Even though the match took place on Wednesday night, Chelsea players were able to return to London only on Thursday morning. Mourinho says that the recovery time for this match, which will take place in Saturday afternoon, is very low and that it is an indirect advantage to their main title rivals – Arsenal and Manchester City.

HONDA ARRIVES AT AC

Keisuke Honda’s arrival to the Italian side Ac.Milan was supposed to mark a sense of a revival for the club but the Japanese player despite having displayed flashes of brilliance it still is not enough to catapult the team where they wish to be.

The situation in the club was so deteriorated that Allegri had to be sacked and removed from the position of head coach with the former player Claerence Seedorf replacing him and the recently appointed Dutch tactician has had to settle with a number of draws since being at the head of the club.

Michael Essien was another signing that the Italian club managed to make before the transfer window came to an end. Since making his move to Chelsea, the Ghanaian defensive midfielder has helped the Premier League team on winning 2 League tiles, 4 FA Cups, 1 Champions League and 1 FA Community Shield.

Ac.Milan is hoping that Essien will help them secure silverwares just as he did when he played for Chelsea.

Essien spoke about some of the reasons he decided to join Ac.Milan.

Essien said "I have just signed my contract with one of the best clubs in the world. Im very happy and looking forward to winning with the team#ForzaMilan."

"I cannot wait to join the team in training and be a part of Milan's family," he added on Milan Channel.

"I am very happy to have spoken to the Milan boss Clarence Seedorf, he is a nice person. It's a pleasure to have heard what Seedorf had to say about me. I always give my best and battle for the team from the first minute until the last. I hope to achieve something important and give my best for Milan."

MOVING ON

Michael Essien might not be playing for Chelsea in the second half of the ongoing season as he is willing for an away move during the mid season transfer window.

Essien had played for Real Madrid on loan in the last season, but, at the start of the ongoing season, he was back to his parent club and with Jose Mourinho making his way back to the Stamford Bridge, it was expected that the Ghana midfielder would feature in the starting XI of the Blues quite regularly, but, that hasn’t happened. He has been given the starting opportunity only a couple of times in the Premier League so far this season.

The club which is believed to be most interested to secure the services of Essien is Al Ain. They are the biggest club in United Arab Emirates and they are currently desperate for a quality midfielder because of the fitness problems of their main playmaker Mirel Radoi.

Radoi had discovered a leg injury while playing in the game against Ahli and he hasn’t managed to recover from that yet. He has played a few games of late though, but, quite clearly, he was not moving that well on the pitch in those games. According to the reports, he might have to undergo surgery to get rid of that problem completely.

While talking to the reporters a couple of days ago, one of the spokespersons of Al Ain refused to say anything when he was asked about the chances of Essien being signed, but, he didn’t deny the rumours either.

Asamoah Gyan who is the skipper of Essien’s national side Ghana also plays for Al Ain and that’s one of the things which might persuade Essien to sign for the UAE club.

Chelsea can depend on Michael Essien

Chelsea midfielder Michael Essien made only his second start of the season in midweek in the Capital One Cup encounter against Arsenal and his performance on the night is being seen as a clear signal that the Ghanaian international is slowly but steadily getting back to his reliable best at the centre of the Chelsea midfield.

Truly, it seems a long time now since Essien joined the club back in 2005 when Jose Mourinho, in his first stint as Chelsea manager brought his to West London from French club Lyon for a fee of £ 26 million. He was an absolute beast for the club in defensive midfield during his first few seasons at the club before a knee injury slowed down his progress and last season, Mourinho took the player on loan to Real Madrid.

And it wasn’t seen by anyone as making up the numbers because Mourinho knows exactly what the midfielder is capable of and he used Michael Essien during his short stay with the club.
And now, reunited once again at Chelsea, the Ghanaian has found first team opportunities hard to come by with just one start before that match against Arsenal. He played the full 90 minutes against lowly Swindon Town in the last round of the Capital One Cup.

Essien played the full match against Arsenal, getting more touches on the ball than any other Chelsea player and he racked up an amazing 64 passes throughout the match, which was also, more than that managed by his teammates.

The 30 year old showed Mourinho exactly how dependable he exactly is and he had Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere bottled up completely. And with competition for places in midfield very high at Chelsea, Michael Essien has made it more interesting by throwing his name into the hat.

Yossi Benayoun
John Obi Mikel

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