"I ran into Sven at the England game against Croatia a couple of weeks ago and he said: 'Andy, do you fancy coming to Notts County?'" wrote Cole in his column in The Independent. "I've known Sven for years, and the smile on his face made it a plausible offer but I can't be sure how serious he was because I cut him off straight away and said, 'No thanks'.
"When I stopped playing 10 months ago, that was it for me. Sven had complimented me earlier, saying, 'You're looking in good shape', and I know he was probably surprised that even a year after my last game, I look no different to when I was playing.
"I'm still going to the gym, I've kept in shape. But that 'no' was a genuine 'no', whatever the seriousness of Sven's offer. It's time for a new direction in my life."