Cole has been one of the most consistent left backs in the past ten years (©GettyImages)
Cole has been one of the most consistent left backs in the past ten years (©GettyImages).

Why has Ashley Cole lost his place in the Chelsea team?

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Despite being one of the world's best left backs of all time, it appears Ashley Cole has lost his place in the Chelsea team for good to Spaniard Cesar Azpilicueta, who is naturally a right back by trade.

This has been a very strange decision from Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho as Cole is still regarded one of the best left backs in world football today.

However in all fairness, Azpilicueta has been performing to a very high standard in his unnatural position at left back and it would appear harsh if he was suddenly dropped from the Chelsea team at this moment in time.

This situation is quite unclear as both Mourinho and Cole have had a close friendship since the England international joined Chelsea from rivals Arsenal in 2007.

With Michael Essien departing the club in January, only a small number of players are still at the club from Mourinho's first spell at the Bridge and out of that group, it was almost certain that Cole would be the second most used player behind goalkeeper Petr Cech.

Since making his career debut in a league cup match at the age of 18 for his boyhood club Arsenal, Cole has been one of the most consistent full backs in the world with some even stating the 33-year-old as the best left back of all time.

His superb level of consistency has been rewarded with three Premier league titles, one League cup, three Community shields, one Europa league and one Champions league in his 15 year career.

He is also the most successful player in FA Cup history having one it on seven different occasions, more than any other player.

Arsenal fans have always called him "Cashley" after he was rumoured to be furious with the club after they had offered him a £55k a week deal.

He soon departed north for west London in Mourinho's last full season in charge as Chelsea boss in his first spell at the club and has since become the Blues' greatest ever left back in their history.

Not only has he been a revelation at club level, he has 106 caps for England and has always been the first choice left back in major tournaments.

However, with Southampton's 18-year-old left back Luke Shaw impressing and recently being called up for the England squad, it appears Cole's international career is now coming to an end due to his lack of playing time for Chelsea.

With the World Cup returning this year, Cole could possibly find himself left out of the final squad with Everton's Leighton Baines and young Luke Shaw both impressing for their respective clubs.

His contract at Chelsea runs out at the end of the season and if he does not force his way into the Chelsea team before this summers World cup, he could leave Chelsea to pursue his career elswhere.

It is rumoured English clubs Liverpool and Manchester United as well as Spanish giants Real Madrid are all interested in bringing Cole in to become their first choice left back and the experienced defender could be tempted.

There is still time for Cole to become a regular in the Chelsea team again but it is very strange how someone so talented at what he does can all of a sudden lose his place in the side.

Although, it is not the first time Mourinho has done this to one of his star players this season. Just ask Manchester United's Juan Mata what its like sitting on the Chelsea bench when your easily the best in your position in the team.


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