Joe Cole: secret weapon for Chelsea and England or the forgotten man?
By Justin Cheung.
Joe Cole leaving Chelsea on a free transfer is looking more and more likely this summer as contract talks between Chelsea and the midfielder have broken down even though he wants to stay. The England winger has played a very minimal role in the Chelsea squad since his return from a serious cruciate ligament injury further putting his place in the world cup squad in jeopardy.
Joe Cole missing from an England squad in a major international tournament could not be envisaged before his injury problems and the continuing contract stalemate maybe having an impact on Cole’s performances for Chelsea.
Carlo Ancellotti has continued to express his opinion that he wants Cole to remain at Chelsea and believes 100% that Cole will be at the club next season, but with Cole’s fringe role in the current Chelsea team he may look elsewhere as the possibility of being included in the England squad looks more unlikely for this summer’s World Cup and future international tournaments.
Chelsea’s current crop of aging players are struggling against Manchester United and Arsenal in a title race in which the blues have gone from first to third in a matter of weeks. There is also continuing speculation that there will also be a massive revamp of the Chelsea squad in the summer with a number of big names including Cole along with Deco, Hilario, Ferreira and even the part-time success Nicolas Anelka being linked with possible exits as Chelsea target a summer of big spending.
The list of players is not surprising with only Cole and Anelka really winning the hearts of the Blue’s fans over as the other players have seriously underperformed after big money transfers.
Joe Cole has in the past been praised as England’s most talented player, but since his injury and Ancellotti’s appointment he has struggled to make an impact. It will be interesting to see over the coming weeks whether Cole will play a key role in the Chelsea challenge to stop Manchester United from winning a fourth domestic league title in a row and whether he can reclaim that England left wing position in which many players such as Stewart Downing, Kieran Richardson, Gareth Barry and even Steven Gerrard have struggled to consolidate.
Many sports commentators have focused on Wayne Rooney as being England’s best chance of winning the World Cup in South Africa, but the prospect of a fit again Joe Cole performing to his past high standards could greatly increase England’s chances. Is this a likely possibility or just a utopian fairy tale ending for Cole? Only Fabio Capello and Ancellotti will know.
The fundamental question is whether Joe Cole can sort his future out at Chelsea and be the player he used to be or will he be another forgotten England man just like Kieron Dyer not so long ago?
Will Joe Cole be at Chelsea next season? Will he go to the World Cup with England? Please leave your comments below…..
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