Rio Ferdinand has been reminiscing about his time at West Ham United following Joe Cole’s retirement.
Cole emerged at West Ham amid much hype.
He was dubbed ‘the conjurer’ by then Hammers teammate Ian Wright went on to make 187 appearances for West Ham over two spells, scoring 18 goals.
Cole was adored by West Ham fans for choosing them as a youngster when he was one of the most coveted players around.
Despite joining bitter rivals Chelsea – and celebrating wildly on scoring against West Ham at Stamford Bridge – the midfield magician restored his popularity when he returned for a second spell under Sam Allardyce.
Rio lifts lid on youngster who should have made it big
His retirement last week sparked plenty of discussion on BT Sport where Cole appeared as a guest alongside his old Hammers teammate Rio Ferdinand.
Rio was full of praise for Cole.
He also revealed another emerging talent from the Academy at the time should have emulated Cole’s success, but lacked the maverick’s self-confidence.
“He (Cole) talks about the way he comes in (to first team training for the first time) and that ignorance was bliss,” Ferdinand told BT Sport.
“And you have to contrast that to another young kid who was doing well Terrell Forbes, he’s coaching now, coaches young kids, he’s fantastic, great lad.
‘We laugh about it now’
“But he came and trained with the first team and we laugh about it, I chat to him when I see him now and we laugh about it.
“But he came in and he (Cole) showed no respect to the first teamers ‘I’m gonna do me, I’m gonna do what I do’.
“Terrell Forbes comes in and he’s calling people like John Moncur ‘Er Moncur can I pass you the ball, (Marc Vivien) Foe do you want the ball’ and being too respectful.
‘Respectful, almost fearful’
“He was over respectful, almost fearful when he was playing with the players. And you see the difference in performance levels. Because he (Forbes) was uptight, really cautious, doesn’t want to put anybody’s nose out of place.
“Whereas this guy (Cole) come in and says ‘Listen I’m gonna empty people, end people’s careers’ in training sessions, ridiculous.”
Forbes was one of several stars emerging from West Ham’s FA Youth Cup winning side.
The defender was once dubbed the new Rio but it proved to be a false dawn.
He went on to play for Bournemouth and Queens Park Rangers before slipping down the leagues.
Forbes played for 15 clubs during his career and retired last season after a spell with Whyteleafe.
A fascinating insight from a Hammers legend.