Essien sitting on pitchChelsea midfielder Michael Essien will captain Ghana at this month’s African Cup of Nations because of injuries to the substantive captain and his deputy.

Permanent captain Stephen Appiah was not named in the squad because of injury and the Black Stars were expected to be led by his deputy John Mensah.

But the England-based defender was also left out of the squad on Thursday night because of of a calf injury which will rule him out of the tournament.

Essien, who has been playing the role of a captain in the absence of both players, will take the mantle to lead Ghana at the tournament in Angola.

He will join the squad next week as he is still nursing a hamstring injury he suffered while playing for Chelsea in the Premier League.

The team is currently being led by veterans Eric Addo and Richard Kingson who have both ruled themselves out of taking the job permanently.



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