COLE JOINS ESSIEN IN INDONESIA

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Former England striker Carlton Cole has joined former Chelsea star Michael Essien in Indonesian club Persib Bandung, according to reports in England.


The 33-year old player spent a large portion of his professional football career in Premier League side West Ham United. He agreed to a one-year deal and he is expected to feature when the new Liga 1 season starts.

Essien, 34, joined the club in March as he decided not to retire just yet. The former Ghana international also agreed to a year deal but he has the option of extension. He claimed he was “excited” with the move and wants to give his best.

The club management said they brought the Champions League winner to Indonesia to increase competition despite the barriers they had to navigate to get it done. Indonesia had Mario Kempes and Cameroon legend Roger Milla in the 1990s but they have not been able to attract top players for a long time. Essien is the highest profile star in the league since then but Cole has joined.

“I never thought my career would bring me to Indonesia, but this is a great club,” Cole admitted.

Persib Bandung is in West Java. The club pulls tens of thousands of fans in games as one of the top sides. The president of Inter Milan Erick Thohir is affiliated with the club. Indonesia’s second richest man Anthoni Salim owns Salim Group which is also linked to the club. The club finished third in the President’s Cup recently and they were among the top five teams in the league last year.

The schedule for the new season is yet to be announced but the former Real Madrid and AC Milan star should be able to combine well with Cole to inspire the club to greater heights.