Ashley Cole: Former England defender finally settles in Roma as defender poses in the middle of squad plane photo

Roma players were celebrating the 2-1 win over Parma where Cole finally put an end to 'the lurker' reputation

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The Independent Football

Ashley Cole has finally integrated into the Roma squad following his summer move after posing in a team photograph in the middle of the rest of the squad.

A similar team photo of the Roma squad last month showed the former England left-back on the fringe of the picture - dubbed 'the lurker' - with the image quickly going viral and triggering a number of memes and jokes at Cole’s expense.

It also led to many imitations of Cole’s pose from fellow players, and there were reports that the 33-year-old was struggling to adapt to his new surroundings in Italy having joined Roma on a free transfer, having seen his Chelsea contract expire in the summer.

However, following the 2-1 victory over Parma on Wednesday that maintain their 100 per cent record this season, Cole appeared in the middle of a the squad as they posed for a picture aboard the team plane. A visibly delighted Cole was left on the bench for the match, which saw Adem Ljajic and Miralem Pjanic give Roma another three points to keep them level with Juventus on four wins apiece.

Cole had started the last three Serie A matches for Roma, but saw his place in the starting line-up go to Jose Holebas for the trip to Parma, and comes after he was left on the bench for the 5-1 Champions League victory over CSKA Moscow.

The Italian side face Hellas Verona on Saturday before preparing to travel to England, as Cole will return to his homeland to faces Manchester City in the Champions League next Tuesday.

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