EXCLUSIVE: This is a transitional season for Chelsea – Michael Essien

Michael Essien says Chelsea are in a "transitional" period but insists the Blues cannot be written off in the hunt for silverware

Alex Sharp
By    
michael essien
Michael Essien joined Real Madrid on a season-long loan last summer Photo: The Sport Review

michael essien

Michael Essien believes Chelsea are in a “transitional” period but insists the Blues are well-placed to pick up some silverware to cap a turbulent season at Stamford Bridge.

The west Londoners, who take on Rubin Kazan in the Europa League quarter-finals, bounced back from their 2-1 Premier League defeat at Southampton by edging into the FA Cup semi-finals at the expense of Manchester United on Monday.

And Essien, who won four FA Cups with Chelsea before heading out on loan to Real Madrid this term, insists Rafael Benítez’s men should not be underestimated as they look to end the season with some silverware.

“They can still win trophies in the cups this season so people shouldn’t write them off yet,” Essien told The Sport Review.

“I have followed Chelsea all season, and although it hasn’t been as planned at the start of the season, I think it’s down to the fact it is a transitional season.”

Essien refused to point the finger at interim boss Benítez, who took over from Roberto Di Matteo back in November, and insisted that a new-look squad, coupled with the loss of players such as talismanic striker Didier Drogba, are the main factors behind Chelsea’s struggles this term.

“A lot of the players from the past are not there and there are new players,” the 30-year-old continued.

“It takes time to blend all of them and create a team straight away. I am sure over time the team will know each other very well and the good times will be back.”

Regarding his own future, Essien appears to be set for a return to west London following his year in the Spanish capital.

He added: “I have a contract at Chelsea and at present I am only on loan here [at Real Madrid], so nothing has changed.”

Find out about Michael Essien’s foundation here

MORE: Get TREBLE the odds on any sports bet. T&Cs apply

MORE: Man United latest news

MORE: Arsenal latest news

MORE: Chelsea latest news

MORE: Liverpool latest news

MORE: Back to The Sport Review homepage

Slideshow
The Sport Review
Top 25 footballers’ cars: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Real Madrid players feature
Slideshow
The Sport Review
The top 15 highest-paid football managers in 2016: Arsenal, Man Utd and Chelsea bosses feature
The Sport Review
Top 30 highest-paid Premier League players: Man Utd, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool stars feature
The Sport Review
Roberto Firmino: 25 photos of the Liverpool forward’s stunning wife
The Sport Review
Man United WAGs: Meet Ander Herrera, Juan Mata and David De Gea’s girlfriends
The Sport Review
Real Madrid player wages 2016: Can you guess how much Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale earn?
The Sport Review
Top 26 Christian footballers: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Man Utd players feature
The Sport Review
Barcelona player wages 2016: Can you guess how much Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez earn?
The Sport Review
Top 25 Muslim football players in Premier League: Arsenal, Liverpool, Man Utd and Chelsea stars feature
The Sport Review
15 Chelsea January transfer targets: Di Maria, Hazard, Lukaku, Verratti and more
The Sport Review
Top 25 most stylish footballers: Arsenal, Man Utd, Chelsea and Liverpool stars feature
The Sport Review
Jamie Carragher reacts to Liverpool’s 4-3 loss at Bournemouth
The Sport Review
Ian Wright reacts to Alexis Sanchez’s display in Arsenal’s 5-1 win at West Ham
The Sport Review
Thierry Henry reacts to Eden Hazard’s display for Chelsea at Man City