I’m a fan of Cole, admits Wenger

ARSENE WENGER has thrown his hat in to ring to sign Joe Cole, admitting he is a huge admirer of the England midfielder.

Cole has sparked a mass transfer scramble after it was confirmed on Wednesday that he is to be released by Chelsea at the end of the month.

Tottenham, Manchester United and Manchester City are also in the frame to sign the 28-year-old, but Wenger is reportedly leading the hunt and admits Cole’s previous performances against his Gunners side have tempted him into making a move.

“I like him as a player because when he played against us he always did a lot of damage against Arsenal,” Wenger said.

“He can create impact through his creative play. He can dribble, he can pass, he can score goals.”

Meanwhile, Rafael Benitez was yesterday confirmed as the new coach of Inter Milan.

The Spaniard has signed a two-year deal at the San Siro, just a week after parting company with Liverpool after six years in charge.

Benitez will be officially unveiled at a press conference on Tuesday.

Gianfranco Zola has set his sights on a return to management after reaching a financial settlement with West Ham.

Zola was sacked at the end of a disappointing season and has since been replaced in the Upton Park hot seat by Avram Grant.

“I am looking forward to finding a new challenge in the game and returning to management as soon as possible,” the Italian said.

The Hammers also confirmed yesterday that Zola’s assistant Steve Clarke has left the club by mutual consent.