Michael Essien is finally set to get his season under way this week.
The injury-hit Chelsea star has not made a first team appearance all season. But the Ghana international, who is missing his country’s bid to win the African Cup of Nations, is pencilled in to appear for Chelsea’s reserves in a game against West Brom reserves at Cobham on Monday.
Essien, 29, has endured injury-hit spells in the past and will have to build his match fitness.
But on his best form he can be become a cornerstone of the Blues midfield and the return of the powerful African will boost Chelsea’s midfield options in the run-in to the season.