Cole Sorry After Arrest
Chelsea and England defender Ashley Cole has apologised to the police for a foul-mouthed tirade that led to him being arrested for drunk and disorderly conduct.
In a statement released by the Chelsea left-back, Cole said he swore out of his frustration with the paparazzi and insisted he would never disrespect the police.
However, Cole admits he did not heed their warnings to calm down and regrets not taking their advice. He also made it clear that he had not consumed a vast amount of alcohol.
Cole declared: "I would like to take this opportunity to apologise to the police officers on duty last night for my language.
"I felt I was being harassed by paparazzi and while complaining to the police about this at the scene they did warn me to calm down, a warning that I regrettably did not heed.
"I fully appreciate that whatever frustrations I may have had with others that it was completely inappropriate to vent those in conversations with the police.
"However, I do want to make clear that I swore in frustration at the paparazzi's behaviour. I would never disrespect police officers in anyway.
"I take very seriously my responsibilities as a professional footballer, this includes keeping my body in the best condition.
"Although I had consumed some alcohol earlier in the evening on a night out with friends it had not been excessive.
"But I accept that the language I used on this occasion was wrong. I regret my actions and how it reflects on myself and Chelsea Football Club."
The 28-year-old was arrested in Brompton Road, South Kensington, at about 2.15am on Thursday morning after emerging from the Collection nightclub.
Police sources said the officers were already on patrol in the street and were not called to any disorder.
One source denied reports they were following up a complaint from a photographer over an alleged bust-up with Cole.
Cole was taken to a central London police station and issued with an ?0 fixed penalty notice for being drunk and disorderly before being released shortly after 5.30am.
Cole is likely to be fined by Chelsea.
The Collection nightclub is a popular haunt on the west London celebrity scene.
Before his arrest last night, Cole had joined Chelsea's first-team squad and more than 300 charity workers, celebrities and supporters for the second annual Chelsea FC and Armani charity fundraiser.
Cole, who racked up a ?,000 bill at the restaurant with team-mates Terry and Michael Mancienne, was "rude" to police after getting frustrated by waiting paparazzi, Mr Maraj revealed.
The manager said the trio had "behaved well" before someone apparently took a picture of Cole inside the restaurant.
The three players enjoyed a range of drinks, some of which may have been bought for them by other guests, he added.
"People were coming up to them during dinner, men and women. They seemed happy and quite polite - all the players came for a quiet night."
Revealing how Princes William and Harry were previously regular guests at the bar, Mr Maraj added: "I believe there was a photographer inside who took a picture of Cole.
"He (Cole) was more frustrated than being drunk, because of paparazzi - it must have been something.
"My staff told me he stopped to speak to police as he left. He was apparently complaining about paparazzi. My staff said he was being rude to the police."
He added that the Chelsea players regularly visited his venue and always behaved well.
Cole ate a Japanese steak costing ?0, he added.