Cole ruled out of Moldova tie
Cole ruled out of Moldova tie

Ashley Cole will sit out England's opening 2014 World Cup qualifier against Moldova on Friday due to an ankle injury.

The 31-year-old left-back featured for Chelsea in the European Super Cup defeat to Atletico Madrid on Friday before joining up with the rest of the Three Lions squad at their training base on Monday.

However, he subsequently returned to Stamford Bridge for treatment after being deemed unfit to take part in training, and the Football Association have confirmed that Cole will now be assessed ahead of next Tuesday's qualifier against Ukraine.

A statement from the FA read: "After reporting to the England hotel on Monday morning, Ashley Cole has returned to Chelsea for further treatment.

"Cole has a minor ankle concern and will be treated by his club this week, before being assessed by the England medical staff on Sunday to see if he is available for the World Cup qualifier with Ukraine."

Everton's Leighton Baines is set to deputise in the absence of Cole, while England manager Roy Hodgson can also call on Ryan Bertrand to fill in on the left side of defence if needed.