Former England striker Andy Cole has announced his retirement from football.
Cole, who was a prolific scorer at his peak, sits second with 187 in the all-time Premier League scoring charts, behind only Alan Shearer. In total, the former Manchester United striker scored 289 goals in 646 appearances in a career spanning 12 clubs.
Reflecting on a career that brought five Premier League winner’s medals, two FA Cups and a Champions League, not to mention 15 England caps, Cole has few regrets.
“There’s always going to be the odd one, with me the way I am as a person, as a player,” he said. “But I wouldn’t change a thing. I’ve lived the dream.”
When Cole signed for Nottingham Forest, he dreamt of firing his home-town club back into the Premier League. Instead, Cole, 37, made an acrimonious departure from Forest 11 days ago.
“It’s not the ideal ending,” Cole told The Times.
“It just wasn’t working out. I told them from the outset that I didn’t want to go there to sit on the bench because I didn’t want to be perceived as sitting back and making easy money.
“I wanted to go there and offer something, but it was a strange one from the start. I never knew what my role was. Was it to lend a hand, use my experience, or was it a PR thing, to sell a few more season tickets? I still don’t know.
“I felt like the manager wouldn’t have a conversation with me. I don’t know if it’s the right word, but he seemed kind of intimidated by me.
“People will look at it and say this is how they expected me to go, in a huff or in some kind of controversy, but it wasn’t like that. I just wish Forest could have been honest. I’ve always been honest in my career, maybe too honest for my own good.”