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Essien Vows To Make Up For Lost Time   
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Michael Essien has vowed to make up for lost time in the new season after admitting his injury frustration has made him a better player. The Chelsea midfielder was sidelined from September last year until March after picking up a serious knee injury. The Ghana international was missed by the Blues and former boss Luiz Felipe Scolari suffered more than most as the Brazilian was shown the door before Essien returned.

But the 26-year-old is raring to go under new manager Carlo Ancelotti and he told the Evening Standard: 'The injury has actually helped me a lot. I had to be strong to cope with the rehab and all the hard work. I have come back stronger than I was before.

'After coming back from an injury like that I am now tougher mentally. You have to be in order to cope with it. I don't worry about the injury now because I'm the kind of person that when I'm on the pitch I forget about everything and just get on with my football.

'It was really tough to watch the games from the stands and seeing my team go through difficulties last season. I'm the type of person who wants to be on the pitch so that we win and lose together.'It seems Ancelotti's biggest problem for the forthcoming season is how to keep his burgeoning band of his midfielders happy. The Italian is still looking to sign AC Milan's World Cup winning star Andrea Pirlo, but also has Deco now claiming he wants to stay.

That means Chelsea could have as many as six central midfielders at the club, but Essien sees it as a cause for optimism not pessimism. He said: 'I think we have one of the best midfields in the world. When you look at who we have you can see some good quality. We are strong now, but maybe we will be stronger in the future.'

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