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Essien joins AC Milan

Premier League

Chelsea's Ghanian international midfielder Michael Essien has joined AC Milan, the Italian Serie A side announced on Friday.

“Michael Essien will arrive in Milan this evening,” AC Milan said in a statement, praising the “high level curriculum” of the player.

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LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 17: Michael Essien of Chelsea in action during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Blackburn Rovers at Stamford Bridge on May 17, 2009 in London, England. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Michael Essien

Essien, 31, arrives on a free transfer having signed an 18-month deal with the northern outfit placed 11th in Serie A, the Italian press reported.

Essien is the first recruit of new Milan coach Clarence Seedorf, and he could play in their Champions League last 16 tie against Atletico Madrid next month with two Milan midfielders suspended for the match - Riccardo Montolivo and Ghanian Sulley Muntari.

Essien started his career with Corsican side Bastia (2000-2003), making his name at French club Lyon (2003-2005) before joining Chelsea (2005-2012).

He teamed up again with Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid (2012-2013), but headed back to England with the Portuguese coach to Chelsea this season, but has failed to feature for the English side.

“If a good opportunity came up for us as for the player with a view to the World Cup he could go, we wouldn't force him to stay,” Mourinho had said. – AFP

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