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Page last updated at 16:33 GMT, Wednesday, 21 July 2010 17:33 UK

Anfield aura key to Cole decision to sign for Liverpool

Joe Cole

Cole scores wonder goal for England (UK only)

The prospect of playing at Anfield was key to Joe Cole's decision to join Liverpool, not financial reasons.

"I thought about the Champions League semi in 2005 when I ran on to the field and the hairs on the back of my neck stood up," said the ex-Chelsea star.

"I was thinking about playing in that atmosphere every week and that swung it for me," added the England midfielder, 28, who has signed a four-year deal.

"I tried to take the finances and location out and think about football."

Chelsea lost 1-0 on aggregate to Liverpool in that 2005 Champions League semi-final in front of a delirious Anfield crowd when even their former manager Jose Mourinho was moved to comment: "I felt the power of Anfield, it was magnificent."

Cole had been expected to remain in London after he was released by Premier League champions Chelsea at the end of May.

Arsenal and Tottenham both expressed interest in the London-born England international, who spent seven years at Stamford Bridge after coming through the ranks at West Ham.

Instead Cole chose Liverpool and he completed his move on Wednesday after passing a medical.

"I know I've made the right decision and I'm looking forward to the challenge," added Cole, who reportedly will earn £90,000 a week at Anfield.

"I have played in London all my life. I could have stayed at Chelsea because the fans loved me and I won things, but I wanted to challenge myself and when I knew Liverpool were interested it was a no-brainer because they are the biggest club in the country."

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West Ham academy graduate Cole becomes Liverpool's second major summer signing after Serbia forward Milan Jovanovic arrived on a three-year contract from Standard Liege.

Cole joined Chelsea from West Ham for £6.6m in 2003 and scored 40 goals in 282 appearances, winning three Premier League titles and two FA Cups.

Cole has won 56 England caps, including two at the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa, on both occasions as a second-half substitute.

Despite reports suggesting he would be handed the number seven shirt, Cole will wear number 10.



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see also
Liverpool complete Cole signing
21 Jul 10 |  Liverpool
Joe Cole's career in photos
20 Jul 10 |  Football
Wilson seals switch to Liverpool
21 Jul 10 |  Liverpool
Riera completes Olympiakos move
23 Jul 10 |  Liverpool
Man Utd rule out bid to sign Cole
23 Jun 10 |  Man Utd
Cole and Ballack to leave Chelsea
09 Jun 10 |  Chelsea


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