The England manager praises the wealth of talent at his disposal, claiming that any animosity between the Chelsea man and the Football Association has been resolvedRoy Hodgson has warned Ashley Cole that the competition for his spot as at England's first-choice left-back is "as great as it's ever been".
The Three Lions boss made sure to stress the ability of his side's emerging full-backs, emphasising that the younger generation are not far off the standard being set by the more senior squad members.
He told reporters: "There are some very good young players coming on to the scene and the experienced players will find it harder and harder to fight off the challenge of these younger players.
|9/1||Ashley Cole is 9/1 with Bet365 to score anytime in Poland v England
"We're not going to be hide-bound to one or two players. We'll have very good alternatives.
"We're lucky that, alongside Ashley - who was regarded as the only left-back in England for many years - we have Leighton [Baines], who will always push him and some interesting younger left-backs, such as Kieran Gibbs and Ryan Bertrand.
"It's been a problem position in many of the countries where I've worked, but now we're very well-off. That's encouraging.
"I would think the competition is as great as it's ever been, even though Leighton has been around for a long time."
|"There are more and more players coming through: Walker, Naughton, Bertrand, Smith, Gibbs, Jenkinson, Kelly..."
- Roy Hodgson
Cole has been at the centre of controversy recently, having taken to Twitter on October 5 to criticise the Football Association in the wake of their release of the report detailing the long-running case between Anton Ferdinand and John Terry.
The defender's reaction invited speculation about his own international future but, with the player having since apologised for his actions, Hodgson claims that the episode has been resolved and on-pitch matters are his only interest.
"We had the incident and the situation and that was dealt with very clearly and quickly and to the FA's satisfaction," he insisted.
"The chairman made his views very clear. I've been allowed to concentrate on football and to work with Ashley Cole on the field. That is all."