Andy Cole is a retired English footballer and Manchester United legend. He played for twenty years, from 1988 to 2008. He played predominantly as a striker, and is most known for helping the Red Devils win a treble.
Cole is a legend of English football, and is the third-highest goalscorer in Premier League history. He is therefore an icon of the game, and is remembered for his goalscoring exploits and will to win.
Early life and career
Cole was born into a family which wasn’t well-off. His rise from humble beginnings makes his star all the more appealing. His father Lincoln emigrated to Great Britain from his homeland of Jamaica in 1957.
Lincoln worked as a coal miner for twenty years. He helped his son realise his dream of being a professional footballer. He would repay his father many times over.
Cole had a brief stint with Arsenal, before beginning his career by joining Bristol City. He quickly became one of the hottest young prospects in England, and Newcastle United won the race to sign him. They broke their transfer record to sign him, and the league would never be the same again.
The Magpies has a star on their hands, as Cole scored 12 goals in 12 games, and never looked back. He scored a staggering 34 goals in 40 games during Newcastle’s first season back in the Premier League. He said goodbye to the club having netted 68 times in 84 games.
Manchester United shocked the world by signing Cole, with the deal gaining notoriety as one of the most infamous transfers in English football. Despite controversies surrounding him, Cole continued to bang in the goals. However, a significant dip in form threatened to take his first time place away.
That would prove temporary, as Cole roared from patchy form to become the most dangerous frontman in England. He scooped up multiple awards and couldn’t stop scoring. The 1998-99 season saw United reap the rewards for Cole’s form, as he helped them win a historic treble.
Soon after that, Cole left United and joined Blackburn Rovers. He then joined various clubs before formally announced his retirement from football. His career spanned nineteen years, and was decorated with goals, assists and trophies.
Records and success
Cole has played for multiple clubs in England, and has left a mark on most of them. His spells for Arsenal, Fulham, Manchester City, Portsmouth, Sunderland, Burnley, Nottingham Forest and Birmingham are less known that his time at Old Trafford.
The lethal striker broke records left, right and centre during his peak. He has a staggering 187 goals to his name, and that makes him the third-highest goalscorer in Premier League history. Only Alan Shearer and Wayne Rooney have scored more than him.
Cole also holds the record for the most goals netted in a 42-game season. He scored 34 times in 42 games to take this record. While the rules have since been changed to have 38 games per season, Cole’s sensational record is the hallmark of an elite striker.
It’s not just his goalscoring that is well-remembered. His rate of scoring was also legendary. He was the fastest player to reach 50 goals, doing so in only 65 matches. He was also a solid playmaker; in fact he was the first in Premier League history to top the goals and assists charts in the same season.
As far as his trophy cabinet is concerned, Cole has one that would put some clubs to shame. With Manchester United, Cole won eight trophies. He has multiple league titles, FA Cup and the UEFA Champions League in his collection.
The man is also part of an elite group of players to win every single award and honour available to an English player at the time. He even managed to win the PFA Young Player of the Year award. As a youngster, he was class and an absolute beast, and then matured into one of the best in the business.
Net worth, earnings and ventures
Cole was one of the best players in England during his peak. As such, his value at the time was sky-high, and even today, his net worth is pretty decent.
By today’s standards, that value may look low. However, older fans will tell you that his value and his stock was extraordinary back in his day.
As of 2021, Cole has a net worth of $1.6 million. This is mainly from his footballing career, with his other ventures playing a minor role. The net worth encompasses the money he earned from football, the assets he owns, and his income from various sources. His earnings have helped him be financially well-settled.
His fortune is also sustainable enough for whoever inherits them. However, despite earning enough for a lifetime, Cole chooses to live modestly and lay low. He is not outgoing like some of his other fellow players, and does not indulge in extravagance like partying and luxury parties.
Cole has ventured into the world of music, and is a musician as well. In 1999, he signed for Warner Music and released a cover called ‘Outstanding’. It reached #68 on the Official Charts Company singles chart, which is impressive given his lack of an extensive background in music.
Cole is active in charity and humanitarian work. In 2000, he visited Zimbabwe and set up the Andy Cole Children’s Foundation. The aim of the foundation was to aid and assist AIDS orphans in the country.
While it ended up being shut down, Cole continued to champion for the cause. In 2015, he set up the Andy Cole fund to raise funds for Kidney Research UK after his own kidney failure.