He left Chelsea on a free transfer in July 2010 to join Liverpool, who a year later loaned him to Lille.
After a season in France, he returned to Liverpool before re-joining West Ham in January 2013.
He was long touted as the hottest prospect in English football, with Manchester United reportedly offering to pay £10 million for his services as a 16-year-old.
Playing in a mould similar to former England favourite Paul Gascoigne, he progressed through the West Ham ranks before making his first-team debut aged 17 on 2 January 1999 in an FA Cup third round tie against Swansea City, and eight days later made his Premier League debut, away to Manchester United.
Cole took advantage of injuries to wingers Duff and Arjen Robben to become a regular member of Chelsea's Premier League title winning team in 2004–05.
He started in the League Cup Final at the Millennium Stadium on 27 February, making way for Johnson after 81 minutes of an eventual 3–2 win after extra time against Liverpool.
Cole played only eight Premier League games in his first season but in the following season, he made 22 Premier League appearances, was a member of the West Ham team which won the 1999 UEFA Intertoto Cup, scored his first goal for West Ham, in a 3–2 League Cup win at Birmingham City on 30 November 1999 and scored his first Premier League goal, in a 5–4 home win against Bradford City, on 12 February 2000.
On 6 August 2003, Cole signed for Chelsea for a fee of £6.6 million after he had rejected a new contract with West Ham.
He spent seven seasons at Chelsea, playing over 280 games in all competitions and winning ten trophies, including three Premier League titles, two FA Cups and two League Cups.
Joseph John "Joe" Cole (born 8 November 1981) is an English professional footballer who plays as an attacking midfielder or winger for United Soccer League club Tampa Bay Rowdies.
Cole started his career with West Ham United, where, after breaking into the first team in January 1999, he played more than 120 Premier League games over five seasons.
In the first half of the 2005–06 season, Cole secured himself in the Chelsea first-team lineup, ahead of Shaun Wright-Phillips and Damien Duff.
Cole also extended his contract with Chelsea for another four seasons.
Joe Cole continued his excellent performances racking up a rate of ten goals and eight assists in all competitions, due to his performance he won the Chelsea Player of the Year 2008.