Andy Cole’s distinguished career came to an end this week so Footy Boots takes a look back at the striker’s achievements.

The 37-year-old became a household name alongside Dwight Yorke in Manchester United’s forward line in the 90’s, but his 19-year career uncharacteristically fizzled out this week.It was an unfitting end for Cole – he made just 11 appearances for Championship outfit Nottingham Forest – six of those coming from the bench, and failed to score a single goal. So Cole took the bold step of calling it a day and remarked: “I wouldn’t change a thing. I’ve lived the dream.”In a career spanning 12 clubs, Cole scored 289 goals in 646 matches.And despite some high-profile controversies – not least being labelled as a loner in the dressing room – Cole will be remembered as one of the most prolific goalscorers at club level in modern-day times.

I say club level, as Cole never made the impact for England which his talent threatened.Cole netted just once in 15 appearances for the Three Lions – mainly down to the ability of Teddy Sheringham and Alan Shearer.But in Premier League history Cole is a light shining bright.Only Alan Shearer (260) scored more goals than Cole’s 187 and excluding penalties (Shearer 56, Cole 1), Cole’s goals-per-league games ratio was actually higher than Shearer.

Cole was always in the right place at the right time, but he also racked up 127 career assists in the top flight and his honours include the much-coveted Treble with the Red Devils in 1999.

The frontman, who has his sights on management, amassed two FA Cup winners’ medals, one League Cup medal, to add to his five Premier League titles and his Champions League triumph.

Cole began his career at Arsenal before being snapped up by Newcastle after turning heads at Bristol City. Cole rattled in 43 goals in 58 games at Newcastle before making a £7million move to Manchester United. Alongside Yorke the pair were almost unstoppable and Cole grabbed 93 goals in just 161 league starts.

It wasn’t always good for Cole though and one of the most feared strikers in the top flight did suffer with loss of form and confidence and he was sometimes unrecognisable.

But he was one of the greatest goalscorers of his generation and the football betting enthusiasts amongst us believe he will go on to be just as successful in management.

By Phil Tomlinson

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