YOUR VIEW ON COLE V BRIDGE
By Patrick Goss. Last Updated: January 1, 1970 1:00am
A wonderful response to the England left back dilemma, with some superb suggestions, and several arguments for both players' inclusion - as well as possible alternatives.
Produced below is a selection of the best feedback - our apologies that we cannot print everything - but we do read every single e-mail and opinion, so keep on sending in.
Cole is suffering, by his own admission, from a lack of confidence, and recent displays have demonstrated a propensity for getting caught out of position and giving away the ball cheaply, something which the likes of Emre and Basturk (should they play) will be only too quick to pounce upon. Bridge is deserving of another opportunity to show how reliable he is, and should also be confident enough to get forward and put in the quality balls we have seen him play. Get the Chelsea man in the side.
Wayne Bridge is the one for me. If Cole nailed half the chances his pace gets him then it might be a different story but with little end result it becomes a question of who's the better defender and it's Bridge every time.
I think Bridge should be the left back against Turkey. I don't think you mentioned Cole's petulance and the fact that if he plays in such a heated game, he WILL get sent off, give a penalty away or both.
If Bridge is better defensively then play him at left back. But why not push Ashley Cole into midfield?! His time as a defender should ensure that he comes back and helps the defence, and then he can't get caught out of position can he? He has pace and flair and is left footed. It all seems so obvious!
One point not made in your article is to play them together. Many people have said this, especially with England's lack of a left sided midfielder. Surely Bridge in defence with Cole in front of him would give the side better balance and make a very stern left side. Quite why Eriksson has never tried it out in friendlies, even for a half, is beyond me as it appears so obvious. Bridge also has been no where near reaching the previous form he was in since he was injured last season. With Cole on a low as well can I suggest Graham Le Saux who has been exceptional this season, we need another England's No 3 at Saints!
I think so far this season that Ashley Cole has been very poor. Wayne Bridge has been decent, but there is a better British left back than the both of these. I am a neutral observer, and I really don't support England, but based on performance alone this season, J Lloyd Samuel is better than both of the players mentioned. He is faster than Ashley Cole and more defensively sound than Wayne Bridge. I really dislike the Aston Villa team, however he is one bright spot on the team.....
Wayne Bridge is the man for the England LB position, that's not taking anything away from Ashley Cole. Ashley is a good player but as everyone knows and have seen in recent games, his tendency to attack really does leave us exposed at the back. I believe that Ashley could play in front of Wayne as a good solution to our ML position; it will leave us with a balanced team that doesn't have to keep coming back onto their 'favoured' right foot to deliver an average cross!
What do you think of playing both players against Turkey? I think that would solve the problem of the left side, do you think that the 4-3-3 really works? Because I haven't been too impressed with it. Don't know why Sven hasn't really tried the Bridge and Cole combo, it was mentioned a while back.
Stuff cockneys, Matthew Taylor/Phil Neville for left back.
I would pick Bridge ahead of Cole any day of the week, in fact I wouldn't even put Ashley Cole in the squad. I would play Bridge, Konchesky, Barry and even Michael Gray ahead of him.
Ashley Cole has the pace that makes up for the tiny bit of defensive weekness in his game. So what did Wayne Bridge do against Liechtenstein? Didn't do a great defensive job did he? And look at the opposition, hardly a Turkey of this world. Go with the man who has been playing at the highest level for the past 3 years. Did you see Ashley Cole for Arsenal in Europe on Tuesday? Splended game from the accomplised left back of english football for the next 10 years. Point closed!