A stalwart of Chelsea FC where he spent seven seasons and won seven trophies, Joe Cole was once praised by the great Brazilian Pele, and even mentioned in the same breath as Lionel Messi. A well-travelled footballer, we take a look at some of the best quotes about Joe Cole.
With three Premier League and two FA Cup trophies in his locker, Cole was seen as an attacking midfielder with the versatility to play as a winger and as an extra forward.
Spoken about as a young prodigy going through the West Ham United FC youth ranks, Cole signed up with the fellow London based Premier League outfit Chelsea in 2003. After being named the club’s player of the year five years later, he suffered injury problems the season next.
Further spells at Liverpool, French side Lille, Aston Villa, Coventry City, and back to both Anfield and West Ham saw no further major successes for Cole, and he ended his career with North American side Tampa Bay Rowdies.
Having once scored seven goals in a game in an eight-one win over Spain in an England Schoolboys game, Cole represented the full senior team on 56 occasions and participated in three World Cup tournaments.
Playing mainly in midfield, he managed 72 league goals in his career in over 500 matches, and a total career of just under a 100. After retiring he went back to Chelsea as a technical academy coach.
“The number 10 for Chelsea, Joe Cole, is a very good player and when I saw him against Charlton he was excellent in the first half…..He has the skills of a Brazilian but he needs to learn when to show the skills and when to play the simple game.”
“I like him as a player because when he played against us he always did a lot of damage against Arsenal…..He can create impact through his creative play. He can dribble, he can pass, he can score goals.”
“Messi can do some amazing things, but anything he can do Joe can do as well, if not better.”
Steven Gerrard (former Liverpool team-mate)
“…..I need a player who can dribble – and I think Joe Cole is that kind of player…..He can play in any midfield position from the left to the right, or behind the front two…..He’s fantastic one-on-one. He’s very clever and passes the ball very well…..He can dribble, pass and score a goal. He’s strong and an Englishman.”
Claudio Ranieri (Chelsea manager)
“In our two Premiership-winning seasons he has been one of our best players.”
Peter Kenyon (Chelsea chief executive)
“Joe’s attitude to training and his commitment has been fantastic. He has been unbelievable, he has worked really hard and he just needs a little bit of luck.”
Kenny Dalglish (Liverpool manager)
“I like Joe. I signed him as an 11-year-old. He is a good player…..I’ve got all the time in the world for him…..I wouldn’t sit here and say I wouldn’t have him at the club because if I did I’d be lying. I do like him.”
Harry Redknapp (Tottenham Hotspur manager)
“…..Joe Cole is a top international player…..He’s the same Joe Cole (I coached at Chelsea)…..a little bit wiser. He’s always had a fantastic attitude, works hard in training and comes in with a smile on his face because he wants to do well.”
Steve Clarke (Liverpool first-team coach)
“He’s one of the best attacking midfield players in England…..He’s a player that can play in a number of attacking positions, which is very useful…..He’s a quality player. People will talk about qualities in different ways, but for me he has an all round quality that makes him a good player…..”
Roy Hodgson (Liverpool manager)
“He was a very talented boy. His skill made him shine…..when he started, Joe did show that…..He was and still is a maverick. He’s an unpredictable player with fantastic skills and vision. He’s a real crowd pleaser.”
John Owens (England Schoolboys coach)
“I read Gerrard’s words about Joe being as good as Messi on the ball and I couldn’t agree more…..After training with him for so long I can tell you some of the things he can do with a football are as good as anything I have ever seen…..If Joe is now played in a more central position he will score and create a lot of goals, I see him as a real runner for Player of the Season. He is not just about tricks, though – his vision is fantastic.”
Arjen Robben (former Chelsea team-mate)
“He’s a player who’s won trophies in the past and who at 28 is probably at his peak age…..He’s been a top player all through his career, so if we are going to get the best of him then it’s great for Liverpool. Hopefully he can win some trophies here over the next three or four years.”
“I know Joe well through the England set-up and have seen first hand just how good a player he is…..He’s proved his ability over many years in the Premier League, sometimes against us…..”
“We have signed a top international player who has been really important for Chelsea…..Joe is a player who has the ability…..a lively character – he’s also an outstanding footballer…..He can play on the right, through the middle or on the left.”