Michael Essien has decided to temporarily stop playing for the Ghana national side in order to focus on his club career with Chelsea.
Essien sustained a knee injury at the African Nations Cup in January that ruled him out for the remainder of Chelsea’s season, as well as the 2010 World Cup.
“I think I will be taking a break,” Essien said. “Not retiring, just not playing for time. I have to take the right decision for myself. I don’t know whether they will be disappointed because they have done fine without me.”
Essien’s statement comes as a real setback for Ghana coach Milovan Rajevac,who said recently that he was looking forward to Essien returning to the Black Stars squad having missed the World Cup in South Africa.
“Michael is still an important component of this side, he is a special player,” Rajevac said. “Essien brings a special dimension to this team. We are looking forward to having him back with us.”