Robert Pires picks Essien as greatest African midfielder to play in the Premier League

Pires came face-to-face with Essien a couple of times during the twilights of his Arsenal career, with the Ghanaian also formerly lining up for Chelsea.

Former Arsenal star Robert Pires has named Ghana’s Michael Essien is the greatest midfielder to ever play in the Premier League.

Pires came face-to-face with Essien a couple of times during the twilights of his Arsenal career, with the Ghanaian also formerly lining up for Chelsea.

Having played in the English topflight for six years, the France international believes no midfielder from Africa compares to Essien.

“I played against him sometimes and he was very strong, very competitive and a very good player with impact, especially in his position. He had good technique too. You know if you play for Chelsea then it means you have quality and Michael Essien had talent and that’s why he was successful at Chelsea,” Pires told Pulse Ghana.

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Asked if Essien he rates Essien as the greatest African midfielder to ever play in the Premier League, Pires answered in the affirmative.

“Yes, I think so, because he was very, very good. And I repeat, for your country (Ghana), Michael Essien is a very good example for young players.”

The former France international arrived in Ghana last Thursday as part of Barclays Bank Ghana’s launch of the Super Fans Fanzone.

Pires is a two-time Premier League winner, and was part of Arsenal’s Invincible side that went unbeaten en route to winning the title in the 2003-04 season.

Also, the 45-year-old was a member of the France squad that won the World Cup in 1998, as well as the Euros in 2000.

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