Essien backs Chelsea to win title

michael-essien-1Michael Essien believes former club Chelsea will be hard to catch in the Premier league title race.

The midfielder, 32, twice won the league during a nine-year spell at Stamford Bridge, including one success under Jose Mourinho in 2006.

Essien thinks Mourinho could do it again with his side top of the table.

He told BBC Sport: “There is still a long way to go, but I’m sure they are in a good position and once Jose is ahead it is very difficult to overtake him.”

Essien, who now plays for AC Milan, sees similarities between the current Chelsea side and the one he played for when Mourinho signed him from Lyon during his first spell in charge in 2005.

In an interview with BBC Sport, the Ghana international – who also played under Mourinho during a loan spell at Real Madrid – assesses the qualities of his former boss and Chelsea’s prospects.

“He is very close to his players and he knows how to talk to them. Sometimes he might ignore you a little bit just to get you a little bit angry and then go out there and perform.

So he has his little ways to keep his players going.

“He is not scared of anyone. Sometimes he is too honest, but you don’t have to take it personally. You have to prove to him that when you are on the pitch you are better. And that’s what he wants.”