Jose Mourinho hails centurion Ashley Cole

Ashley Cole taking a throw
© PA Photos
Jose Mourinho backs Ashley Cole to continue for at least another four years as he approaches his 100th appearance for England.

Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho has praised Ashley Cole ahead of the full-back's 100th cap for England.

Manager Roy Hodgson confirmed yesterday afternoon that the Chelsea defender would start against Brazil at Wembley Stadium tonight, thus taking his appearance numbers for the Three Lions into three figures.

Having worked with Cole during his time in charge of the Blues, Mourinho has insisted that there is no reason why the 32-year-old cannot continue playing at the highest level for another "four to five years".

"The brain controls, but the body needs to answer to the brain," said Mourinho. "His brain gives him, for sure, four to five years at a high level. I hope his body says yes.

"Ash is one of the best left-backs in the world. He is the kind of player who it is difficult to choose his best performance, because he is always so stable.

"I left England in 2007. At that time he was the best. Six years later he is still the best. He has won everything at club level and is getting his 100th cap. I believe the football world in England knows who he is."

Cole made his debut for England against Albania back in 2001.

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