- Premier League
Cole expects to leave Chelsea
Ashley Cole has confirmed that he expects to leave Chelsea when his contract expires this summer.
Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho had hinted that Cole and his fellow Chelsea stalwarts John Terry and Frank Lampard could still have a future at the club next season, despite their contracts running out.
While Terry has since been handed a new one-year deal by the Stamford Bridge club, Lampard's future remains uncertain and it now seems as if Cole has played his last game for the club.
Cole appeared to let on he knew his future lay away from Stamford Bridge after he left the pitch in tears following a lap of appreciation after Chelsea's last home match of the season against Norwich on May 5.
Mourinho then denied that Cole being made Chelsea captain for the final-day win at Cardiff was his way of giving him a decent send-off at the club.
Now the left-back, who retired from international football when he was left out of Roy Hodgson's England World Cup squad earlier this month, took to Twitter to announce he will not be staying at Chelsea.
I am weighing up my options for playing next season with my agent and sadly it does not look like chelsea will be one of them.— Ashley Cole (@TheRealAC3) May 19, 2014
Thank u Chelsea FC for making my 8 years there a pleasure to work all the staff and players, we've been through a lot, good and bad— Ashley Cole (@TheRealAC3) May 19, 2014
Cole, who has been at Stamford Bridge since making a contentious move across London from Arsenal eight years ago, went on to thank Chelsea supporters for their backing down the years:
And this tweet is to the FANS that have stood buy me through thick and thin, I will always have u in my hearts, #cfcfans— Ashley Cole (@TheRealAC3) May 19, 2014
Cole has collected a host of major medals during his time at Chelsea, winning the Premier League title in 2010, as well as four FA Cups in 2007, 2009, 2010 and 2012, the Champions League in 2012 and the Europa League last year.
In February, reports said Cole "may be tempted" by a move to America's MLS, but widespread reports have also suggested he could be a transfer target for Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers this summer.