Former Chelsea player Ashley Cole believes new Blues boss Antonio Conte will return Chelsea to their previous glories after meeting up with the squad on their pre-season tour of America.
Speaking to the club’s official website, Cole is looking forward to watching his former teammates under the Italian’s stewardship after last season’s disappointing campaign.
The 35-year-old is now playing for LA Galaxy after a frustrating spell in Italy with AS Roma where he rarely featured.
Playing alongside former rivals Steven Gerrard and Robbie Keane, Cole is enjoying regularly first team football once more, for the first time since leaving Stamford Bridge.
With his side progressing well in the MLS Western Conference, Cole took the time out to catch up with a few old friends at Chelsea’s base in California.
Despite enjoying a new life out in America, the Englishman revealed that he is still keeping a close eye on proceedings in west London.
“Of course I’m still paying attention! Last year was disappointing for me, speaking as a fan now, and speaking to some of the boys they were disappointed too”.
However the defender who played 221 times for the club revealed that he feels there is reason for optimism once more at the club.
“With the new manager, and with the signings that have come in, we will see something totally different and similar to the old Chelsea.”
Blues fans will be able to see their team’s development under Conte as they take on Premier League rivals Liverpool early on Thursday morning, before further games against Champions League winners Real Madrid and AC Milan as part of the International Champions Cup.