Monday 26 June 2017

'I still laugh to myself to this day' - Ashley Cole is enjoying Arsenal's decline

Chelsea's English defender Ashley Cole gestures to Chelsea fans following the English Premier League football match between Cardiff City and Chelsea at the Cardiff City Stadium in Cardiff on May 11, 2014. Chelsea won 2-1. AFP PHOTO/BEN STANSALL -
Chelsea's English defender Ashley Cole gestures to Chelsea fans following the English Premier League football match between Cardiff City and Chelsea at the Cardiff City Stadium in Cardiff on May 11, 2014. Chelsea won 2-1. AFP PHOTO/BEN STANSALL -

Callum Davis

Ashley Cole has opened up on the circumstances that saw him leave Arsenal and has admitted he cannot help but laugh at their lack of success since his departure.

The former England left-back joined Chelsea in an acrimonious series of events that saw him and Jose Mourinho charged with tapping-up offences.

Cole and Mourinho were handed record fines after being found guilty in the Premier League's 2005 tapping-up probe.

Arsenal defender Cole was handed a £100,000 fine, while Blues manager Jose Mourinho will have to pay £200,000.

Cole joined Mourinho's Chelsea revolution 12 years ago after rejecting a new £55,000-a-week contract from Arsenal.

The left-back completed his transfer across in London in a £5m deal that saw William Gallas move in the opposite direction.

Speaking on the ITV's Play to the Whistle programme, which aired on Tuesday evening, the 36-year-old said he had no regrets about leaving Arsenal.

"No, I had a great time there and of course I miss the old players but I moved on and I won every trophy I could, so I wouldn't say I look back and regret it, no," said Cole.

Ashley Cole was appearing on the ITV panel show alongside Arsenal fan and comedian Romesh Ranganathan, who asked whether he secretly enjoyed his former club's lack of success since his departure.

"If I'm honest, yeah, I still laugh to myself to this day," Cole admitted.

"I had a lot of history there and of course the way I left was maybe dodgy, but I think they showed me a lack of respect, too.

"I have to blame myself too. Perhaps I did things in the wrong way. But when I look back on it now I could blame a lot of parties and it's now 10 years ago."

Ashley Cole spent six years at Arsenal, winning two Premier League titles and three FA Cup's in his time at the club.

Since Cole's departure Arsene Wenger has failed to win another league title while Ashley Cole went on to win the Premier League and the Champions League in a eight-year stay at Stamford Bridge.

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