Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti has had his say on the Ashley Cole shooting affair, and has maintained that there is “internal discipline” at the club, and that the club is not “out of control.”
30-year-old Cole made front and back page news over the weekend, following an incident at the clubs Cobham training base, where he shot a student on work experience at the club with an air rifle.
And Ancelotti says that whilst Cole made a mistake, for which he has apologised, the idea of sacking the England defender never entered his mind.
“There is no way for this [sacking Cole]” said the Chelsea boss.
“He is our player, he always took a very good behaviour here. He made a mistake, he knows this, now we have to move on.
“When one player said ‘sorry, I made a mistake,’ it is difficult to do different.
“Obviously we are not happy with what happened, but I have spoken with him, he was really disappointed with this, he said sorry, he made a mistake, it was an accident, and now obviously we have taken the proper action, but tomorrow he will play and I think he is focused to play a good game.
“He stepped over the line about the rules and we will take the proper action.”
And the Italian manager, who won the Premier League and FA Cup double in his debut season at Stamford Bridge, revealed that Cole has apologised to all concerned with the incident.
“First he said sorry to the guys that were involved in this, second sorry to the team-mates, third sorry to the club” added Ancelotti.
Moreover, the Italian also added with 100% certainty that Cole would start in tomorrow’s crunch match against Manchester United at Stamford Bridge, where a defeat for the Blues will all but knock them out of the Premier League title race.
“He [Cole] will play tomorrow, yes.
“I don’t think this changes our thought about him, he is a good player, a fantastic player.
“Maybe he did a mistake in this situation but he remains a very good player and in my opinion a very good professional.”
Chelsea dominated the early stages of the Premier League title race this season, but have tailed off in recent months, with poor performances, notably in the away defeat at Wolves and the home defeat by Liverpool.
Rumours have been rife that the club is out of control and on a downward spiral, but Ancelotti was resolute in ascertaining that the club is being run correctly and that there is discipline within the Chelsea ranks.
“We have to take our decision, because here there is a discipline” said a defiant Ancelotti.
“Cobham is not out of control.
“There is discipline, the player has to respect this if some players step over the line, we will take a decision – This is a normal life.
“From outside nobody can say here is out of control because we have internal discipline. We will take a decision, we dont want to speak outside which decision we take here, so it is not true that here there is no discipline. You can judge the player on the pitch.
“The player on the pitch are showing fair play, are showing respect for the referees and showing respect for the fans. This is what you have to judge, not other things, because nobody is here.”
Police meanwhile will be investigating the incident, and they hope to speak to Chelsea officials soon.