Essien pens new Blues deal

Image: Essien: New contract

Chelsea have handed a new five-year contract to midfield star Michael Essien.

Five-year contract for Ghana star

Chelsea have handed a new five-year contract to midfield star Michael Essien. The Ghana international has tied himself to Stamford Bridge until 2013 and follows hot on the heels of team-mate Petr Cech, who signed a similar deal on Monday. Chelsea finalised the deal after touching down in China ahead of their pre-season tour in the Far East. "I am really pleased to have extended my contract with Chelsea," explained Essien. "I am very happy here, we have a great team and fantastic fans who have always made me welcome. With the addition of the new manager, I am feeling very positive about the season ahead." Chelsea's new boss Luiz Felipe Scolari was only too happy to see Essien sign his new deal. "I have not been here long but it is clear to me that Michael Essien is one of the best midfield players in the world," said Scolari. "I have always admired him and it is good news for me and for Chelsea that he signs for so long." Essien joined Chelsea in 2005 from French champions Lyon and has shone for The Blues. He has also showed his versatility, having on occasion dropped back to play at right-back and even in central defence.

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