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FA charges Ashley Cole over tweet

Ashley Cole has been charged with misconduct by the Football Association following his foul-mouthed outburst on Twitter.

The Chelsea and England defender called the FA a "bunch of t***s" after the governing body's independent regulatory commission investigating the John Terry racial abuse case cast doubt on his evidence.

A statement on the FA's website said: "Chelsea FC's Ashley Cole has been charged by The FA in relation to a Twitter comment which was improper and/or brought the game into disrepute."

Cole has until 4pm on Thursday to respond to the charge.

The timing is not ideal given the charge demands a response barely 24 hours before England's World Cup qualifier with San Marino at Wembley.

However, it is not thought there is any threat to Cole's chances of winning his 99th cap beyond the fact coach Roy Hodgson may elect to rest him ahead of the crucial trip to Poland four days later.

Cole reported for duty at the FA's new St George's Park complex in Burton along with the rest of his team-mates at lunchtime.

Whilst the FA do have disciplinary jurisdiction to suspend Cole if they wished, in instances of this nature, they are far more likely to hit the defender with a fine rather than a ban.

Cole will be part of the England squad that assemble at St George's Park for the official opening on Tuesday by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo confirmed the left-back would also be punished by his club for the tweet, saying: "We've got a social media policy at the club and there's going to be a disciplinary process - action - against the tweet and that's how I'll leave it.''

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