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Ashley Cole retires from international football after omission from World Cup Squad

Tuesday, 13 May 2014 - 8:03pm IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: dna webdesk
  • Ashley-Cole Getty Images

The 33-year Old Chelsea full-back announced his retirement from international football, following Roy Hodgson's decision to exclude him from the World Cup squad.

Cole managed to make only 17 Premier League appearances, as he was replaced by Spanish full-back Cesar Azpilicueta in the left-back position. But that's not all, as Cole found tough competition from 18-year old Luke Shaw and Everton's Leighton Baines. The Southampton teenager made 35 appearances in the Premier League, whereas Everton left-back Baines made 32 appearances, scoring 5 goals. Lack of playing time eventually resulted in exclusion from the squad. This is what Roy Hodgson had to say on his decision, according to Daily Mirror:

 "It was an unbelievably difficult decision. It was a hard job to ring Ashley and I'm grateful for the incredibly dignified way he took the call. Circumstances will prove whether taking the younger man will be right. I've decided on Luke Shaw and I can only praise Ashley for the way he took the news." 

Roy Hodgson to the England FA:  "Among many difficult decisions I've had to make for my squad, not selecting Ashley was one of the hardest. He's been an incredible competitor for England, to amass over a century of caps is a truly staggering achievement and he deserves enormous credit for the desire and brilliance which has shone through over the years he has represented his country. There are few players who can be considered among the very best in the world, but Ashley in his prime was the best left back without question. The most important factor was speaking to Ashley prior to the announcement on Monday, he deserved to hear it directly from me and he took the news with huge grace. n two years working with him he has shown nothing but relentless professionalism, and a great hunger to play for England. He is someone I have the utmost respect for and I wished him all the best, he in turn wished the team well this summer. The most important factor was speaking to Ashley prior to the announcement on Monday, he deserved to hear it directly from me and he took the news with huge grace. n two years working with him he has shown nothing but relentless professionalism, and a great hunger to play for England. He is someone I have the utmost respect for and I wished him all the best, he in turn wished the team well this summer. Of course I must respect his decision to retire, he has been one of England's finest players, but I want to look to the future. It has been one of the hardest decisions of my career."

Tweets from Ashley Cole after his exclusion from the World Cup squad: 

 

Retiring after being capped 107 times for the 'Three Lions', Ashley Cole remains England's most capped full-back 




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