Ashley Cole has recently been released by LA Galaxy and Aston Villa unsurprisingly find themselves linked with the England defender as Dean Smith has no cover at left-back.
According to The Sun, Cole has interest from Villa and Derby County – two clubs who have former Chelsea teammates (John Terry & Frank Lampard) among the coaching staff which could lead to a war for his signature.
Neil Taylor is first-choice at left-back for Villa but there’s no obvious replacement if he’s injured. Alan Hutton has been used in a makeshift role, but he’s a first-choice right-back under Smith so it’s not the most ideal situation.
Cole might be a good option on a short-term deal, as it temporarily solves Villa’s defensive crisis and he’s been in fine form in the MLS. The 37-year-old was named Fans’ Player of the Year for the Galaxy last season.
He’s made over 90 appearances in all competitions since his 2016-move to the United States and would bring a wealth of experience to the Villa defence – 225 appearances for Arsenal, 338 appearances for Chelsea, 16 appearances for AS Roma and 107 caps for England.
Cole has won three Premier League titles, seven FA Cups, one League Cup, one Champions League and one Europa League crown. The Sun believe he was earning £5k-per-week at the Galaxy which Villa can more than afford, so Cole wouldn’t be an expensive gamble.