Chicharito arrived from Chivas of Guadalajara for £8m as Reds boss Sir Alex Ferguson digested the news his number one choice to add extra firepower to United's attack, David Villa, had chosen to go to Barcelona from Valencia for £34.2m.
It was not the 'signature' import United fans, nor it seems Wayne Rooney, wanted.
But Chicharito's story has echoes of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's.
"I have always said you don't have to spend millions and millions to win the Premier League title," Cole told the Manchester Evening News. "Shelling out X,Y and Z amounts doesn't guarantee you anything.
"When you arrive at a place like Old Trafford sometimes it is better not to have any great expectations weighing on your shoulders.
"Chicharito came to United and nobody really knew anything about him and didn't really expect anything from him for a while. He was one for the future.
"I remember exactly the same things being said about Ole when he came over from Norway.
"But just because you haven't cost a fortune nor have a proven background doesn't always mean you don't have it.
"Like Ole did when he got his opportunity and took it early in his United career, so Chicharito has made an impact.
"He reminds me of Ole as well. He can score with his right and left foot and one of his biggest assets is to get a shot off quickly."