Apologetic Cole to face Man United
Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed that Ashley Cole remains part of his first-team plans after accidentally shooting a work placement student with an air rifle and has denied that indiscipline is rife within his squad.
Cole was plastered over the News of the World on Sunday, amid allegations he shot 21-year-old Tom Cowan, who had to be treated by the club's medical staff after being hit in the side by a lead pellet, at Chelsea's Cobham training ground with a .22 rifle.
The police have been made aware of the incident and will see if they are required to take things further, while the club have insisted appropriate action has been taken.
With Chelsea facing title rivals Manchester United on Tuesday, Ancelotti fielded questions about Cole's place in the side and the Italian has confirmed the left back will not be dropped, but did admit that the defender overstepped the mark.
"He will play tomorrow," Ancelotti said. "We are not happy with what happened but I have spoken with him. He was disappointed and said sorry and that he made a mistake. He said it was an accident and we are taking the proper action. But tomorrow he will play and I feel he is focused to play a good game."
A lot had been made of the lack of comment from Cole over the incident, but Ancelotti confirmed the defender had apologised and that he had overstepped the line of what is and is not acceptable.
"He has apologised," Ancelotti said. "He apologised to the guys involved, then sorry to his team-mates and then to the club.
"He has stepped over the line and we will take proper action."
Ancelotti was asked if there was a chance Cole would be sacked. "No, there is no way," he said. "He is our player. He has always shown good behaviour, and made a mistake. He knows this and now we have to move on."
It has been claimed that Chelsea's Cobham training ground is out of control, but this again has been dismissed by the Italian.
"Here there is discipline," Ancelotti said. "Cobham is not out of control. At Cobham there is discipline and the players respect this. The players know that if they step over the line we will take a decision. This is normal life.
"From outside nobody can say this club is out of control as we have internal discipline and take appropriate action. It is not true that there is no discipline."