Next Game

FC Astra v West Ham

Thursday, 06 August 2015, 19:00

Europa League Qual Third Round

Last Game

West Ham 1 - 2 W Bremen

Sunday, 02 August 2015, 15:00

Friendly Match

Cole eyes dream debut in Cup

New signing Joe Cole cannot wait to get stuck into Manchester United as he prepares for a second West Ham debut in the FA Cup.

Last Updated: 05/01/13 at 17:18 Post Comment

Joe Cole: Desperate to impress the fans in the FA Cup

Joe Cole: Desperate to impress the fans in the FA Cup

The 31-year-old midfielder has returned to Upton Park, where he began his career, on an 18-month contract and is set to face the Premier League leaders in the Saturday evening kick-off in one of the ties of the third round.

"That would be the dream to play," said Cole who emerged from the Hammers academy to sign professional terms in 1998.

"These are the games you want to play - Manchester United in the Cup. We'd settle for 1-0 but it will be a tall order. It is a tough ask and we'll be giving everything.

"I'm buzzing to play and make my debut again. I'm just looking forward to playing."

It will be an emotional occasion for Cole who became a fans' favourite before leaving for Chelsea in 2003 after the east London club were relegated from the top flight.

The midfielder, capped 56 times by England, got his introduction to first-team football with the Hammers back in January 1999 and also had spells with Liverpool and Lille on loan.

"I can remember I was cleaning the changing room floors when big Frank (Lampard senior) came in and said to me 'You got a suit son? You're in the squad tomorrow'," Cole said.

"I had to finish cleaning the floors, finish cleaning the khazi floors too, then got myself home and drove to the ground four hours early as I was really nervous.

"I came on when we were 1-0 down and Julian Dicks scored the goal that took us to a replay, then bang, you are there - gone from being a schoolboy to being a pro footballer."

Had things turned out differently Cole could have moved to Manchester United, having turned down an invitation to join the first-team squad at Wembley for the 1996 FA Cup final.

"Sir Alex Ferguson did want to sign me as a young kid, but I had made my decision to come here as all my pals were here and I was very comfortable here as a youngster," Cole added.

"They asked me to go the Cup final with them, but it wouldn't have been right going along and taking in all the razzmatazz of the day.

"It would have been lovely for a young kid, I was only 13 at the time, to go the Cup final with them, but it wouldn't have been right because I knew I was going to sign for West Ham, so we said no because I didn't want to lead anyone on."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

think that puts all doubts over Benteke's quality to bed. Can he do it after receiving the ball to feet, in the box, totally unmarked, on a warm, sunny afternoon in Swindon? Oh yes he can! This year is definitely Liverpool's year. YNWA.

rationalmanc
WATCH: Benteke's debut screamer

A

ll very well selling all midfield and strikers but unless we bring anyone in that is better than what we had then it will be a terrible transfer window in my view. Sorted out the defense but our midfield and striker options look very light.

bigo
Spurs Halfway To The Perfect Summer

L

ove it when Jose accuses others of being defensive, cynical and playing to win. If I was Wenger, I'd get that quote laminated and framed - surely the biggest compliment he's ever received from Mourinho. You've got him riled Arsene - you're relevant again!

suarez_blind
Jose rues pitch and weather after defeat

Footer 365

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has 'difficult questions'

Arsenal centre-half Per Mertesacker says manager Arsene Wenger has a lot of "difficult questions" to answer.

West Ham forward Enner Valencia ruled out for up to 12 weeks

West Ham forward Enner Valencia has been ruled out for up to 12 weeks with a leg injury.

Jordy Clasie says he'd have rejected move to Man United in order to join Southampton

Jordy Clasie claims he'd have rejected Man United to sign for Southampton - saying it's "better to start lower and finish higher".

Mail Box

There's A Lot Of Anger About TV...

...and how much you have to pay - largely for games you don't actually want to watch. Many of you are forced to go illegal. We also have mails on Chelsea, Angel di Maria and...

Not Just A Friendly. This Had Meaning...

Arsenal fans are very excited about beating Chelsea (don't remind them about last year), while there is criticism for BT and a football fan tired of being screwed by TV...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company