You have got to say that Paul Lambert was probably one of the worst things to ever happen to Aston Villa, at least in their recent history, and by extension so was Joe Cole (maybe not the worst, but still).
Now, that might sound a little harsh. How could poor little Cole save Aston Villa from sinking? It would be like asking a child armed with Play-Doh and some wine corks to stop the Titanic from sinking. However, that does not excuse him from being a pretty shoddy signing.
There was a time when Joe Cole was considered one of the brightest talents the nation had to offer, someone who was literally going to lift England from the pits of misery and place them in eternal glory. A Premier League chief who was forged in the fiery furnaces of West Ham’s iconic academy and introduced to the footballing world a golden messiah, a prophet of the beautiful game.
Unfortunately, his glory days were long gone by the time he arrived at Villa Park aged 32 and what fans were left with was a rusty mess, chipped and dented from years of depressing injuries and mistreatment.
A bit like a child’s old toy, Joe Cole was unearthed from the storage boxes and given one last nostalgia-fuelled chance to leave a mark on the Premier League. But like with the dated and broken toy, it was quickly realised that some things are better left in the past.
Cole played just 16 times in all competitions across two seasons and appeared in the 2015 FA Cup final squad, albeit on the bench, before leaving the club in January 2016 to join Coventry, eventually retiring in 2018 following a stint with United States second-tier side Tampa Bay Rowdies.
Aston Villa fans, what exactly was going through your mind when Joe Cole signed? Join the discussion by commenting below…Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!
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