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The Damned ACL

It ruled me out for five-plus months of play just four years ago. Now it's taken The Bison off the field for at least six.

Sky Sports obviously had some bum news over the weekend when it reported Michael Essien had suffered an ankle injury and would miss around four weeks. Now, the club's official website, reveals Essien, in fact, ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament and will miss the best part of a year.

"I am very disappointed to get this injury now and to miss the start of a very important season for Chelsea and Ghana's World Cup qualifiers," Essien told Tuesday. "I hope to make a full and quick recovery."

So, now, our "mini injury crisis" is a MAJOR one. Of course we still have a fantastic midfield, but without Essien, we're missing one of the most versatile and dynamic players in the world -- you can't just replace that. The injury enhances even more the importance of one John Obi-Mikel, and how critical his performances will be for this club. If we can get displays like the one we witnessed against Portsmouth on a consistent basis, we should be able to weather the storm. If not, well, would you rather see Belletti in the holding role? I didn't think so.

Another thought. There's a 27-year-old mifielder, with World Cup and Serie A experience, sitting in the free agent pool as of right now. He's actually an international teammate of Mr. Essien. Anyone think Pete should pick up a phone, and make a call?

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