The African side reached the quarter-finals of the 2010 World Cup, and the AC Milan player insists that they can go one better in Brazil.
"The squad for this tournament is the best Ghana has to offer, and the quality in depth is extremely good, especially in midfield. We have multiple options in most positions which is always a plus for any side," Essien told the official FIFA website.
"Our initial aim will be to get out of the group into the second round, and then take it from there game by game. Who knows? We are certainly capable of going one better and making it to the semi-finals or even finals. Anything can happen, but we are realistic enough to know we cannot aim that high from the start.
"Get the first objective of making the second round out of the way, and we will see how far we can go. It will be a journey without doubt, one we are looking forward to."
The Black Stars are up against Germany, Portugal and the United States in the group stage.