Former West Ham United striker Carlton Cole has revealed that both Alan Curbishley and Sam Allardyce tried to sell him during his time at Upton Park, in an exclusive interview with Football FanCast.
Cole spent nine seasons at West Ham between 2006 and 2015, arriving at the club shortly before Alan Pardew was fired.
The forward scored 68 goals during his 293 appearances for the club, but spent a number of spells out of favour at Upton Park.
However, Cole was often able to win over the manager in charge and he revealed how his relationship with Curbishley changed.
“When Curbishley came in he didn’t take to me as I thought he would, but only because I was supposed to go back to Charlton for a second loan season from Chelsea and I chose not to do the second year,” he told Football FanCast.
“He held that against me, I know he did. He tried to get rid of me and Paul Konchesky straight away when he came in, because Konch had a bust-up with him before he left Charlton.
“Shortly after he came in there were a load of injuries, after we stayed up at Old Trafford. He wanted to get rid of me that summer but I did well in pre-season and managed to get a chance. Teddy Sheringham left, Dean Ashton got injured on international duty, so suddenly there were spaces open for me and I knew then I had to graft.
“All I wanted to do was leave an impact so they would always miss me if I wasn’t playing. I needed a run of games, all young players need a run of games to get momentum. I needed to make sure I was invaluable to the team and to my teammates and that’s how I got in the team, then the goals came after. Curbishley then saw that he’d got me playing the way he wanted and he couldn’t drop me after that.”
Following West Ham relegation in 2011 Cole had the opportunity to leave the club again, but decided to stay and enjoyed his best goalscoring season as a result.
“Under Allardyce in the Championship, I could’ve gone to Stoke and stayed in the Premier League but I didn’t think it was the right thing for me to do,” he told FootballFanCast.
“I knew I had to stay at West Ham to try and get them up but Allardyce did want to get rid of me. But I said I wasn’t going anywhere, even though he didn’t really trust me. But then we had a midweek game at Watford and I started because he had to rotate the team, and I scored. That was the start of me being first choice again because I started scoring goals.
“He couldn’t drop me either but I had to battle to stay there.
Cole was often an underdog as West Ham but as his career showed, he was always able to prove his doubters wrong.
With nearly 300 appearances for the club in total, Cole played a crucial role in their promotion back to the Premier League during the 2011-12 season and scored regular goals in the top-flight.
A great servant to the club, it is hard to understand why he was so often under-estimated by his managers.