Ryan Bertrand is an FA Cup and a Champions League winner, as well as an English international.
At just 23, the left-back's CV looks good and he seems to have all the credentials to replace Chelsea legend Ashley Cole.
Ashley Cole is widely regarded as the best left-back in the world; and he has been for some time now. Tremendous athleticism, skill and professionalism have made Ashley Cole the highest earning defender of all time.
However, the 32-year-old signed only a one-year contract with Chelsea which will see him leave the club he joined eight years ago at the end of the upcoming season. Cole will probably continue to play football professionally for a few years, but with him and England's back-up left-back Leighton Baines being at the far end of their careers, Ryan Bertrand may have the opportunity to start at left-back for both his club and country.
So the question looms: Is Ryan Bertrand good enough to replace Ashley Cole? The young Englishman rarely gets a start in an important match for the Blues when Cole is fit. Bertrand usually features in low-key matches and often as a substitute either at left back or on the left wing, the striking exception being the UEFA Champions League final victory against Bayern Munich in 2012, his debut in the competition where he started alongside Ashley Cole on the left flank. Cole's understudy started a remarkable 14 league games this season and did his job rather well.
His blistering pace and maturity make him a great prospect for Chelsea. Is the former youth team captain ready to take over the left-back spot and start 38 games a season?
Any signs of discomfort on Bertrand's part may prompt Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho to splash out on a new left-back. In the eyes of many Chelsea fans Bertrand has the ingredients to play consistently for Chelsea. Perhaps, some would like to see Mourinho buy a new left-back at the end of the next season.
In conclusion, only time will tell if Ryan Bertrand can live up to Ashley Cole's legacy. Maybe he is as good as Cole was at 23 when playing for Arsenal. Does the home-grown Stamford Bridge left-back have the potential to be the next Ashley Cole?
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