Joe Cole admitted it was "surreal" to have rejoined boyhood club West Ham but is relishing the chance to help them towards a bright future.

The 31-year-old has signed an 18-month contract with the Hammers to end a miserable spell at Liverpool. Cole's talent had long been talked about even during his days in the West Ham academy, and after signing professional terms in 1998 he became a firm fans' favourite before leaving for Chelsea in 2003 after the east London club were relegated from the Premier League.

The England international went on to win eight major trophies - including three Premier League titles - with the Blues, but is now ready for the next chapter in his career after returning to where it all began. "It is great to be back where I started and very surreal, walking out on pitches where I played when I was at under-13s," said Cole.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2013, All Rights Reserved.

Topics:
#Joe Cole
#Internationals
#Football
#Chelsea
#Premier League
#West Ham United
#Liverpool