Former Chelsea midfielder Michael Essien has become the latest footballer to be honoured by an unflattering statue.

The life-size sculpture of the 35-year-old – unveiled on a roadside in the city of Kumasi in the Ghanaian’s homeland – has sparked plenty of debate on social media, with many criticising the likeness of the artwork.

It has also drawn comparisons to a statue of Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo in Portugal and one of Argentinian World Cup winner Diego Maradona in India, both of which received similar criticism.

Essien, who was at Stamford Bridge between 2005 and 2014, now plays for Indonesian club Persib Bandung.

The Cristiano Ronaldo statue in MadeiraThe Cristiano Ronaldo statue in Madeira (Adam Davy/PA)

He seemed unconcerned by some of the negative reaction though, opting to retweet a photograph of the sculpture posted by Ghana-based sports journalist Saddick Adams.