Chelsea defender Ashley Cole is prepared to begin contract negotiations with up to five interested foreign clubs at the beginning of the new year unless an agreement is reached that would let him stay at Stamford Bridge for at least two more years, ESPNFC reports.
The 31-year-old defender is hoping to convince Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich to change his policy of offering one-year contracts to players over 30. Cole, who says he would like to end his career at Stamford Bridge, has already rejected a one-year offer, and is understood to be seeking a minimum two-year extension.
According to the report, there is no fallout between Cole and club officials over the negotiations, which are currently on hold until just before Christmas. If an agreement is not reached, Cole could reject the opportunity to sign a pre-contract agreement in January and wait until the summer to try and convince Chelsea that he is deserving of his demands, as a move away is understood to be only a last resort. Didier Drogba adopted a similar approach last season before ultimately moving on to Shanghai Shenhua in China.