Why Chelsea's Ashley Cole will not be signing for French side Monaco

This morning the British press have linked Ashley Cole with a bumper move to French side AS Monaco, but the move is far from straight-forward.

If you are to believe reports in today’s Express, French club AS Monaco are set to offer Chelsea defender a two-year deal worth around £12 million this summer. Cole is a free agent come the first of July and will not be offered a new contract at the London club. It would also be very surprising if the former England international was a high target for Monaco come the end of his contract.

Right now Monaco already has two very talented left-backs at the club, and it would be a surprise to see Cole join a club knowing he wasn’t first choice. At 33-years-old he has played a cameo role in Chelsea’s campaign this season, only starting 14 games. He has been replaced by Cesar Azpilicueta, and the Spaniard has done tremendously well. At Monaco, Cole would have to displace French Under-21 star Layvin Kurzawa, and that will be no easy feat.

The French defender has been a revelation for Monaco this season and has become one of the stars of Claudio Ranieri’s team. He has scored five goals from left-back and looked every bit as good a player as the big money signings that were brought in last summer.

Unless Monaco receives a huge bid from one of Europe’s elite clubs, there is no reason why Kurzawa won’t be part of Monaco’s starting line-up against next season, and Cole would have to do with a place on the bench. In fact there is no guarantee that Cole would even be second choice at the Stade Louis II.

During the January transfer window, Monaco signed Nigerian defender Uwa Elderson Echiejile from Portuguese side Sporting Braga. The 26-year-old signed a four-and-a-half year contract and is a Nigerian international. He only managed three appearances this season due to the excellent play of Kurzawa, so Cole would have to force his way past both defenders to get a place in the Monaco team.

The Monegasque club are looking for experienced players as they go into their Champions League campaign next season, but they will want players that can enhance the squad, not just add to the wage bill. Perhaps signing Cole would be too big a gamble for the side from Monte Carlo.

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