Home » Latest, Transfers » Man City have also joined the race to sign Ashely Cole

Manchester City are one of the clubs chasing Ashley Cole, who confirmed at this week that he will be leaving Chelsea after eight years.

The 33-year-old left back, who retired from international duty with 107 England caps having been left out of Roy Hodgson’s World Cup squad, is out of contract and attracting interest from Liverpool, Monaco and New York Red Bulls.

But Cole remains close to Manchester City Under-21 coach Patrick Vieira, with whom he played at Arsenal, and they connection between the two could sway Cole’s decision.

City already have Gael Clichy and Aleksandar Kolarov at left back – but Cole’s arrival would ease the pressure on their Champions League squad.

City have to include eight players which UEFA consider to be in ‘home-trained’ in their reduced 21-man squad. If they replace Kolarov with Cole it would reduce the pressure on the squad as Cole qualifies as an ‘association-trained’ players and can help make up the eight-man quota.

Cole enjoyed eight years at Chelsea after leaving Arsenal in 2006 in what was a highly controversial move after Chelsea were found guilty by the Premier League of breaking their rules in meeting Cole prior to a transfer.

The 33-year-old has won two European Championships, 107 England caps, three Premier League titles, seven FA Cups, a Champions League and Europa League trophy, one League Cup and three Community Shields.

He is keen to play on for at least another season and eight clubs have reportedly already expressed an interest in securing his services.

Cole tweeted on Monday night: ‘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.’

He added: ‘Thank you Chelsea FC for making my eight years there a pleasure to work all the staff and players, we’ve been through a lot. And of course the fans, how do I start? I can only say thank you for giving the boys confidence to win some amazing trophies.

‘This tweet is to the fans that have stood buy me through thick and thin, I will always have you in my heart.

‘Now I’ll be looking for another journey in my life. I hope it can be like my others – full of fun and of course WIN something.’

Manchester United does not look a likely option with Southampton starlet Luke Shaw seemingly bound for Old Trafford but new manager Louis Van Gaal may look to Cole if negotiations with Shaw are unsuccessful.

Arsene Wenger is in need of a replacement for injury prone Kieran Gibbs and inconsistent Nacho Monreal. Returning to Arsenal, where he spent nine years before leaving for Chelsea for higher wages and earning the nickname ‘Cashley Cole,’ would be a controversial move.

Meanwhile Brendan Rodgers could be keen to bring Cole to Anfield to solve his problem at left back, where he deployed Glen Johnson, Aly Cissokho, Mamadou Sakho and Jon Flanagan last season.

Cole has spoken in the past about the attractions of playing in Europe. When his representatives negotiated his latest deal last year, worth just under £200,000-per-week, they held tentative talks with Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester United.

Real are still thought to be interested in an experienced player and consummate professional like Cole, while PSG have the money in the coffers to satisfy his wage demands.

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