Bernstein reveals Cole apology
FA chairman David Bernstein has revealed Ashley Cole apologised to him personally on Monday night over his offensive Twitter message.
Bernstein also stressed that England manager Roy Hodgson will decide whether the Chelsea full-back plays against San Marino in Friday's World Cup qualifier.
Cole was charged with misconduct by the FA on Monday over his Twitter outburst on Friday when he referred to the governing body as a "bunch of t****" in response to the independent regulatory commission's damning judgement on his evidence in the John Terry racial abuse verdict.
Bernstein, speaking to Radio 5 Live ahead of Tuesday's official opening of the National Football Centre at St George's Park in Burton, revealed that Cole had followed up his apology to the FA on Friday with a personal apology on Monday night.
"He apologised immediately on Friday and he came to see me last night and apologised to me personally," said Bernstein.
"He showed real contrition. He said he was really sorry.
"He is free to play for England over the coming matches. It is up to the manager to decide whether he plays or not."
Cole was given until 4pm on Thursday to respond to Monday's FA charge. the timing far from ideal given the deadline is barely 24 hours before England face San Marino at Wembley.
With Bernstein confirming it is up to Hodgson to decide whether or not to play Cole, the only threat to his chances of winning a 99th cap would appear to be if the England manager opts to rest him ahead of the crucial trip to Poland four days later.