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The England left-back, who has been subject to taunts from opposition supporters in recent years, claims he is able to block it out when playing for club and country

Chelsea defender Ashley Cole has hit back at his boo-boys by claiming he can’t hear their taunts.

The 32-year-old England international has become recognised as a cult villain away from Stamford Bridge in recent years and has even been booed by England fans at Wembley.

But Cole claims he is made of thick skin and doesn’t hear the crowd when he’s on the pitch.

“No player wants to hear their own fans booing the players, booing the team,” Cole told the Green Soccer Journal magazine.

“But football is a hard game and you can’t win everything.

“As players, of course it’s hard because you don’t want to hear it.

“I recognise, though, that we’re there to do a job and I’m representing my country. And when I’m playing I’m able to block it all out.”

Cole admits his relationship with the fans has changed over the course of his career but believes that is down to naivety, as fans don’t recognise how good professional footballers are.

He added: “I’d say it’s changed from when I first started out as a player but what can you do?

“There are more opinions in football today.

“More people have strong opinions and they’ll tell you what they think of you without actually realising what you’ve achieved and how good you are.

“I know that if I walked into someone’s house or their office and I watched them at work I’d probably say ‘You’re not doing that right’ too.

“I might not really know what it is that they’re doing but I’m watching them do it so...

“As players we understand it. Of course, fans pay their money to come, of course they’ve got a right to air their feelings, to say what they feel or say what they see, basically.”

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