Chelsea have reacted swiftly to deny suggestions left-back Ashley Cole is behind schedule in his bid to recover from a broken left ankle.
Cole has returned from three weeks in France following the operation, which is understood to have been a complete success, and speculation that his chances of making the World Cup finals in South Africa this summer were slim have been quashed by Chelsea.
Describing such a claim as "nonsense", a Chelsea spokesman told Press Association Sport: "The club's medical staff are delighted with Ashley's operation and the treatment he's received so far. Contrary to reports, he's recovering extremely well from his injury and he's bang on schedule."
Cole is set to return prior to the end of the season and stake a claim for a place in Fabio Capello's squad.
The England international fractured his left ankle against Everton in early February, and following surgery has undergone intensive rehabilitation.
The defender remains the country's first-choice left-back following Wayne Bridge's decision to rule himself out of contention for England selection.
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