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Soccer News of Friday, 30 December 2011

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Essien returns to action in January

Michael Essien may make his long-awaited return from injury before the end of January, Chelsea coach Andre Villas Boas said on Friday. The Ghana midfielder has been out of action since July when he ruptured the anterior ligament and cartilage in his right knee during training.

He will miss the upcoming African Cup of Nations in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon but is likely to hand Chelsea a major boost next month.

“I think mid-January. He will be introduced to first-team activity in mid-January and contention properly I think we are looking at three weeks for him to gain form and start competing to the level that the others are,” Portuguese boss Villas Boas was quoted as saying by Kick Off.

“It could take less time if we are positive about it and maybe in two weeks he can reach that level of form to come back for the team.”