After eight years with the London club, former England left-back Ashley Cole decided it was right to call time on his Chelsea career and look elsewhere. This came after a frustrating season for Cole, who was replaced in the team by Cesar Azpilicueta for the majority of games. This week Cole was signed by Italian club Roma and can now look forward to the new challenges that lie ahead. There are many left-backs that have been linked with the Blues that could take his place but, after being such an influential player, it is important that Jose Mourinho chooses wisely.
The two main targets appear to be Atletico Madrid’s Filipe Luis and Sporting Lisbon’s Marcos Rojo, with the latter impressing for Argentina at this summer’s World Cup. Both are quality full-backs but they would have big boots to fill at Stamford Bridge.
At 28 years of age, Filipe Luis has played 127 league games for Atletico Madrid since joining in 2007 but only four international games for Brazil. He possesses good pace and also very disciplined positioning which makes him hard to get past. Marcos Rojo is 24 years old and has played 49 league games for Sporting Lisbon since they signed him from Spartak Moscow in 2012 and, since 2011, he has played in 28 international matches for Argentina. He is solid defensively, having previously played at centre-back, and is also very efficient at getting forward.
I would personally go for Rojo because he has more international experience than Luis and also as he is four years younger, meaning Chelsea should be able to get more years of top quality out of him. With regards to the defence, whoever they sign will join centre back Kurt Zouma, who has recently joined the Blues and …