Football

Ashley Cole calls time on England career

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Chelsea's out of favour left-back, Ashley Cole, has decided to bring an end to an England career which saw him turn out 107 times for the international side.

Following his omission from Roy Hodgson's World Cup squad, who instead opted to take Everton's Leighton Baines and Southampton's Luke Shaw, Cole took to Twitter to confirm that he would not be a part of the squad this summer, or at any point in the future.

The ageing left-back said: “I got the call from Roy and agree [the] England team should be about the young players. I think it best I retire from [the] England team now.

“We have a great manager and team and I wish them only success. I will be supporting them like a true fan. Thanks to everyone for everything.”

Cole has been a prominent part of both the Chelsea and England set-up for many years, but the return of Jose Mourinho has seen the player, who was an indispensable part of the team during Mourinho's first spell at Chelsea, dropped to the bench for much of the season.

Cole has made just 18 appearances for the club this season, in contrast to the 33 that he played last season, as Mourinho has taken a liking to the young Cesar Azpilicueta, who is naturally a right-back.

His future at Chelsea is also in doubt; another subject which he took to Twitter to speak out about.

He said: “Whatever happens it's been a pleasure. You Chelsea fans have been amazing to me”, adding fuel to speculation that he may not be offered a new contract at the club he has served since 2006.

Roy Hodgson told reporters that dropping Cole was an “unbelievably hard decision".

“He is a magnificent player and what he has done for England is second to none.”

The England boss also praised the defender for the graceful way in which he accepted his time on the left side of England's defence was up.

He said: “I can only be unbelievably grateful for the graceful way that he accepted the decision, accepted that it was a decision I had to make. I had to make a decision and I've gone for Luke.”

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Topics:
Chelsea
England Football
Football
Ashley Cole

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