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Essien set to leave Chelsea - agent

ESPN staff
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Michael Essien is set to leave Chelsea, according to the midfielder's agent, Fabian Piveteau.

Essien had been a key player under Jose Mourinho during the manager's first stint at Chelsea, and the Portuguese had even taken him on loan to Real Madrid last season, but the Ghana international has made only five appearances in the Premier League so far this season.

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Mourinho had said last month that Essien would not be allowed to leave Stamford Bridge on loan, but an exit now appears inevitable as the 31-year-old seeks further playing time - and he has been linked with a move to AC Milan.

"The player will leave Chelsea," Piveteau confirmed. "I have had a lot of contact with different clubs, but Milan are not one of them - or at least I personally haven't had direct contact with the Rossoneri.

"I have some important meetings coming up this week, and then I will fly to London to assess the best solution with the club and the player."

The Sun claimed on Thursday that Napoli are keen on Essien, whose contract expires at the end of the season, after former Blues coach Rafa Benitez failed with a bid to sign John Obi Mikel.

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