Just days after Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich tried to draw a line under the off field scandals that have dogged two of his star players at the club, reportedly telling the squad that he expected far better standards of behaviour from Chelsea players and that any further misdemeanors in the press would be dealt with, ultimately, by the player being forced out of the club, it seems England left back Ashley Cole is already set to test the Russian Billionaire’s patience after it was revealed in a British newspaper at the weekend that Cole had smuggled girls into the team hotel on the eve of a match, twice.
Worse still for Cole, there were new claims at the weekend that the left back, who is married to Girls Aloud star Cheryl Cole, enjoyed a “romp” with Seattle based Ann Corbitt during Chelsea’s pre-season trip to the United States in 2009. At the time Cole is believed to have lied to Chelsea’s head of communications, Steve Atkins, stating that the story in the press was untrue. However Abramovich and the Chelsea board are unlikely to be too happy after hearing that Cole lied to senior club officials in an attempt to keep the details from appearing in the newspapers.
Since the story broke, Cheryl has been seen out in America without her wedding ring and there are, so far unsubstantiated, rumours that she has ended their marriage via text message.
The previous conduct of Cole and also that of club captain John Terry, forced Abramovich to send Chief Executive Ron Gourlay and manager Carlo Ancelotti into a showdown meeting with all the players last week, manager Ancelotti explaining.
“It was the owner’s idea and we have had a meeting with all the players this week, explaining to them behaviour that is expected here.”
“Now everhone knows what they have to do to protect the image of this club.”
Barely days later the news broke that Cole had smuggled secretary Vicki Gough into his hotel room before away games with West Bromwich Albion and Hull City last season, an act in clear breach of the clubs code of conduct which states that all visitors are banned from the team hotel. This combined with the fact Cole has once again tarnished the clubs image, as well as lying to a senior club official previously means that the defender, currently out injured for three months with a fractured ankle, will be brought to task by Abramovich this week.
It is thought that Cole may well be fined two weeks wages (£200,000) for his latest transgressions, although some are speculating that Abramovich has, like Cheryl, grown tired of Cole’s continual appearances on the front page of the papers for his misdemeanors and may well be ready to sell the player in the summer. Although manager Carlo Ancelotti is believed to be ready to try and persuade the Russian to hang on to the player that he rates as the best left back in the world.
Given the intense scrutiny on his private life in England, Cole is believed to prefer a move to Spain, with both Real Madrid and Barcelona reportedly ready to stump up the £25m Chelsea would want for the defender.
And just as many betting sites online made the news yesterday by paying out on the Cole’s seeking a divorce, they may well be paying out once again in the summer if Ancelotti cannot plead his case to keep Cole well enough and the player makes his often rumoured move to Spanish football.