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Essien, who is in France as a special guest of football’s world governing body, FIFA, for Ghana’s game, paid a surprise visit to the Princesses hotel in Vannes before the team left for the Stade de la Rabine in Vannes for the opening match.

Essien said his visit was to inspire the Princesses to a good performance. The Ghana players were over the moon to see their idol during lunchtime as the former Chelsea, Real Madrid and AC Milan star went round to greet each player amidst wild cheers. He later joined the player to sing and dance to cheer songs in camp as they psyched themselves up for the France match.

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On Saturday, Essien tweeted how excited he was to be in Brittany to cheer the Ghanaians, and thanked FIFA General Secretary, Fatma Samoura, for inviting him.

“Happy to be in Brittany 4 fifawwc! Can't wait 4 Ghana's #BlackPrincess @ Stade de la Rabine tomorrow   . Merci fatma_samoura pour l'invitation!” he posted on his Twitter page.

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Essien, who featured for Ghana at the 1999 FIFA U-17 World Cup in New Zealand, the 2001 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Argentina, also met volunteers for the Ghana-France match and also took time off to inspire some selected children at FIFA-organised charity event.

credit: graphic.com.gh