Essien has given credit to his former team member Olympique Lyon for shaping his career.
Essien, who joined the Ligue 1 club in 2003 from Bastia for a four-year deal said: “It moved me from being a young player to a senior player at a big club, so, it helped me grow up and feature on the big stage.”
“I gained a lot of experience in a short space of time,” he told 3news.com.
He named out team owner Jean-Michel Aulas for praise, announcing he has been the team’s most important leader over the years.
“I think the set-up of the club as a whole and the longevity of the president [has helped],” he said, “there has been continuity and they also know how to develop good players.”
Despite leaving the team in 2005 after making seventy one appearances, the 37-year old holds the teams dear to his heart as he still adores the reminiscences he made there.
“The two titles and Champions League games will be my favourite memories.”
”Michael Essien scored seven goals for Lyon, top-scoring four trophies including Ligue 1 trophies and Trphee des Champions