Essien is unfit to play – Panathinaikos confirms

Essien HighGhana midfielder Michael Essien

Ghana midfielder Michael Essien has been ruled out of Panathinaikos’ UEFA Champions League third qualifying round tie later this month due to fitness concerns.

The 32-year-old has recovered from injury but head coach Yannis Anastasiou does not want to risk him.

Panathinaikos will know their opponents for the Champions League on Friday and the two-legged tie will be played in late July and early August.

There are chances the experienced will make his debut in the first leg of the playoffs (either Champions or Europa League) on 18-19 August.

Essien could be in action in their Greek Super League opener against Panaitoliko on the weekend of 22-24 July in Agrinio.

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