The Arsenal manager has made the surprising suggestion that Gibbs could model himself on former Arsenal full-back Ashley Cole.
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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has suggested Kieran Gibbs may jump ahead of Leighton Baines and Luke Shaw in the queue to replace Ashley Cole as England left-back.
“For a long time it was Ashley Cole, no discussion, now it is a bit more open” Wenger told Sky Sports, going on to make the surprising suggestion that former Arsenal player, who left the club in acrimonious circumstances, would be a fine role model for Gibbs to follow.
“You see stories about Ashley Cole, but on the day of a game, when it mattered and when you had to be there, he was always there. You have to respect that… It is a good example to follow because Ashley is top.”
Cole left Arsenal in 2006 to join Chelsea after turning down a £50k-per-week contract, and is a much hated figure at the Emirates as a result.
His pedigree though is undeniable, and Wenger clearly would like Gibbs to emulate the 107 cap defender.
Now that he seems to have put the worst of his injury problems behind him, Gibbs is ready to push on, and Wenger will be hoping that he can replicate the success that Cole had for club and country.