He was once rated amongst the best midfielders in the world, and he was the player that every manager wanted in their team. The type of work horse that your team needs to stand up, fight, and put his body on the line. He was a hero in the stands and you’d often hear his name ringing out loudly at the Bridge.
However, a succession of long term injuries has seen our powerhouse Ghanian midfielder to lose form and confidence, especially last season. He looked half the man he used to be, was out of shape, and lacking pace. It was heart breaking, particularly when he’d so often been our saviour, popping up and scoring invaluable goals, and going on ridiculously powerful runs with defenders bouncing off him. We all remember those days clear as day light. We all crave to see that Michael Essien back being the best player on the pitch.
Well, our bison midfielder looks to have regained his fighting spirit and has took the first steps of returning to the force he once was. If you have a problem, we all know you have to admit the problem before you can solve it, it’s the same with loss of form in football. You have to admit to yourself that you’ve lost your form, then you have to get to the route of why you’ve lost form, and then get back that fighting spirit and vow to defeat it. It looks as if this is what Essien has done. Conceding his injuries have caused his lack of form, but he’s fought back to his best.
Speaking whilst at a clinic in Miami help youngsters with diaspora, he told reporters “My intention is to stay and I’m looking forward to a new season I still have two more years here. I’m still here, I’m still around. I feel now that I am coming back to what I used to be. It’s been a long road but I am almost there. It’s always frustrating when you are injured and not playing but you have to work and stay positive”
Re-assuring comments from the 29-year-old, who clearly feels he is back to his best, and wants his last shot that surely he deserves?
Deserves it may be, but club officials may have other plans, we are understood to believe that Chelsea are willing to listen to offers for Essien as they try and clear out they’re growing squad. It could be a case of too little too late for Essien. But having said that, I feel there is a place for him in this team, he can play the holding midfield role and also as a deep lying midfielder, so I feel it is there where he could still offer us something. Chelsea will need a good set of deeper midfielders to rely on this season, with the attacking setup taking shape, we’ll need more defensive minded players behind them, which I feel Essien can be.
I’m anxious to see what happens, I hope he gets his deserved last chance, he’s done a lot for this club and is still very much a fans favourite. I’m sure supporters are willing to forgive his poor form, especially if he pops up to score the winner against AVB’s Tottenham this season!
Simon Phillips – News Editor, follow my Twitter for the latest CFC news @chelseafctbos