What will Joe Cole offer to Liverpool?
It may have come as a surprise to some that Joe Cole, the hottest English property of this summer’s transfer window opted to join Liverpool, becoming new manager Roy Hodgson’s first signing. Cole was being courted by both Arsenal and Spurs, both of whom could offer him the gift of Champions League football whilst allowing him to stay at his London home. However Cole announced this week that Mersyside is to be the next stage in a career that has so far spanned West ham United and Chelsea, as well as 56 England Caps.
Joe Cole was a child prodidgy who Harry Redknapp once said he would have given anything he wanted to sign him for West Ham as a teenager. Sign for West Ham he did, his local team, and he progressed to an early league debut before rumours circulated that Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson was ready to pay 10 million for his services when he was just 16. Sir Alex and his Scouting network would have been well aware of Cole back from an England youth match against Spain when he bagged 7 (SEVEN) of England’s 8 goals that day.
So Cole’s stock was high as a youngster but whilst trophies flowed for the ufabet เข้าสู่ระบบเว็บตรง versatile midfielder at Chelsea (3 Premier League titles, 2 FA Cups, 2 League Cups and 2 Charity Shields), you have to feel that the early hype that led to Paul Gasgoigne comparisons have not quite been met. Knee and cruciate ligament injuries have not helped his cause but a succession of managers have been reluctant to give Cole the freedom he craves on the pitch, particularly from a central role. Oft Cole has had to be disciplined from the left side of a midfield and offer defensive contributions to the team that has stifled his natural attacking instincts.
So can we assume that his move to Liverpool, a Liverpool very much in transition after a relatively poor league season, no Champions League football and an uncertain future under Roy Hodgson, is a move based on footballing decision and a sign that the Kop may offer him the footballing role he craves?. From Hodgson’s point of view, Cole is the quality of signing that may tip the balance of persuasion in keeping star players Fernando Torres and club captain Steven Gerrard at the club. For Cole he may see a central attacking role, alongside Gerrard, one based on increasing creativity and the supply of chances to Torres.