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Last Updated: Friday, 28 July 2006, 10:56 GMT 11:56 UK
Chelsea & Arsenal hold Cole talks
Ashley Cole
Cole signed a contract extension at Arsenal in July 2005
Arsenal have admitted to holding talks with Chelsea about the sale of Gunners defender Ashley Cole.

The 25-year-old, who is under contract until 2008, has been linked with a move to Stamford Bridge for over a year.

And Arsenal vice-chairman David Dein said: "As we speak now he is an Arsenal player and until you hear otherwise he is an Arsenal player.

"We have had a couple of very civil conversations with Chelsea and there is nothing else to say on that."

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has already admitted he is unsure whether Cole will still be a Gunner when the season starts.

Dein added: "He's our player. He started with us when he was 16 and if something else happens we will wait and see.

"If something happened and we decided to take an offer that's another story but at the moment he is under contract to us."

Cole's relationship with Arsenal has been strained recently and in promotional material for his new book, the defender criticised the Gunners for making him a "scapegoat" over last year's tapping-up affair with Chelsea.

Chelsea, Blues' manager Jose Mourinho and Cole were all fined after they breached league rules by meeting without Arsenal's knowledge.

Cole signed his new contract after that but Chelsea's decision to sell left-back Asier Del Horno to Valencia last week is widely expected to pave the way for him to move to Stamford Bridge.



SEE ALSO
Cole signs new deal with Arsenal
18 Jul 05 |  Arsenal
Wenger wants Arsenal to keep Cole
15 Jul 06 |  Football
Cole's agent charged over meeting
07 Apr 06 |  Football
Chelsea will not fight Cole fine
15 Jun 05 |  Chelsea
FA will continue agent inquiries
06 Jun 05 |  Premiership
Cole tapping-up evidence revealed
04 Jun 05 |  Premiership


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