Chelsea footballer Ashley Cole has been name England’s Player of the Year for 2010.

With a reputation as one of the world’s finest left-backs Cole is the first defender to win the award.

The award was voted for by England fans who registered who they believed had been the best performer over the last 12 months on the FA’s website.

Steven Gerrard came second and Adam Johnson came in third.

Forty-four players were used by coach Fabio Capello in 2010, with Ashley Cole featuring in nine of the 12 fixtures.

A consistent performer in 2010 Cole has also had a strong showing during the Euro 2012 qualifying games.

As a member of England’s failed-miserably World Cup Team Cole is regarded as one of few players who could return to Blighty with his head held high.

Mind you, his private life was a different story.

Around this time last year Cole’s X-Factor star wife Cheryl left him after allegations of his infidelity came to light. 

Ashley and Cheryl: splitsville

In taking the Player of the Year honour he has stopped Wayne Rooney from achieving a hat-trick. Rooney was named England Player of the Year back to back in 2009 and 2010.