Joe Cole set to leave Stamford Bridge? Seems a distinct possibility.
Joe Cole has revealed that he still has not been offered a new deal by Chelsea, although he hopes to reach an agreement in the summer.
The midfielder’s current contract expires at the end of the season at which point he could leave Stamford Bridge on a free transfer.
And despite Carlo Ancelotti stressing recently that Cole remains an integral part of his plans, speculation regarding a possible move has been mounting for some time.
Reports have also suggested that the Blues are not prepared to meet the wage demands of Cole, who has struggled to establish himself as a regular in the starting XI since returning from serious injury.
The 28-year-old has now voiced his frustration after admitting that talks are not progressing smoothly.
“I’ve never spoken publicly about contracts before,” Cole said in The Sun.
“I don’t think contracts should really be discussed mid-season. I have always signed mine in the summer in the past.
“But this time it’s different. We can’t seem to find common ground and it’s distracting. At the moment there is no offer on the table, so I know where I stand.
“I still hope to talk in the summer.”
Cole missed most of 2009 following knee surgery and concedes that it has been difficult to rediscover his best form.
But he believes he can play a crucial role in Chelsea’s quest for a domestic double and has pleaded with Ancelotti to give him more chances.
Cole recognises that he needs to play regularly over the next couple of months if he is to break back into the England squad ahead of the World Cup.
Speaking about his fitness, Cole stated: “There are no niggles. Of course, I am not match fit, but how can I be when I don’t play?” (Sky Sports)
Could Chelsea be trying to tell Joe Cole something? Various noises have come out of Stamford Bridge about their intention to keep the England international at the club but if they are so keen to avoid losing the former West Ham man this summer, why haven’t they made a decent, or indeed any, offer to the 28 year old?
Clearly injury has had a big impact on attacking midfielder’s chances of reasserting himself on the west London sides first team picture but surely over the years Joe Cole has shown more than enough quality to be able to garner a regular spot in the starting eleven? Yet Florent Malouda has done well over the past year but I still rate Cole as a more complete package but it seems Carlo Ancelotti disagrees.
There will be no shortage of takers should Chelsea decide to allow Cole to run down his contract and the likes of Man United and Tottenham are said to be very interested in the ongoing contract talks at Stamford Bridge and Sir Alex Ferguson may see the Cole as the source of more creativity linking his midfield to attack. Harry Redknapp would also dearly love to be reunited with the player he brought onto the scene at Upton Park.
The next couple of months may be crucial. If Joe doesn’t get a look in then he may not even bother considering any offer on the table as clearly at this stage in his career first team football is key and even a better contract will be of no use if he continues to warm the Stamford Bridge bench.