Michael Essien: Chelsea midfielder secures AC Milan move

Midfielder Michael Essien has completed his move to AC Milan from Chelsea, signing a 17-month deal with the Serie A team.

The 31-year-old, who joined the Premier League side in 2005, will be officially unveiled at the San Siro on Tuesday.

The two clubs agreed a deal for the Ghana international on Friday.

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho told the Blues' official website:  "We would have been happy had he stayed because he is fantastic player for the team."

The experienced midfielder has committed his future to the Italian side until June 2015.

Essien, who was Chelsea's record signing when he arrived from Lyon for £24.4m, has made nine appearances this season since returning from a loan spell at Real Madrid.

Essien at Chelsea

Appearances: 256 (33 as substitute)

Goals: 25

Honours: Champions League (2011-12), two Premier League titles (2005-06 & 2009-10), four FA Cups (2007, 09, 10 & 12) and one League Cup (2007)

"He's given everything for the club and a great chance arrived for his future," added Mourinho.

"I know he can continue to play at a high level and I wish him success and happiness in Italy and at the World Cup in Brazil."

The midfielder held talks with new Rossoneri manager Clarence Seedorf last week.

There had been reports in the Italian media, which Essien later quashed on Twitter,  suggesting he had failed a medical.

Essien helped Chelsea to win the Champions League - although he was an unused substitute in their 2012 final triumph over Bayern Munich - as well as two Premier League titles and four FA Cups.

He made only 10 league starts in 2011-12 following an injury-hit year and moved to Real Madrid on loan last summer.

Following 35 appearances with the Spanish giants under Mourinho, he followed the coach back to Chelsea after his loan spell ended.

However, he has struggled for a place in the team this year, starting only two Premier League matches since his return, and the £21m signing of Nemanja Matic has further decreased his chances of playing.

Seedorf was named Milan boss last week after Massimiliano Allegri was sacked with the club 11th in the table.