The reason why Andy Cole hates Sheringham REVEALED!
“How dare you”
In the same week that the singer/songtress Carly Simon decided to lift the lid on the mystery surrounding her song, You’re So Vain – it was about the record honcho, David Geffen – Andy Cole has chosen to lay a similar ghost to rest.
Namely, his beef with Teddy Sheringham. For years, people have been speculating about what could possibly cause such animosity between two gifted strikers. And, as reported in today’s Independent, it’s not so much a case of making a mountain out of a molehill, as making a mountain out of a molecule.
Cole revealed all in today’s column:
Some of you will know the background to that, but perhaps not the full details. Others might be surprised our rift had such apparently mundane roots. But here’s what happened.
It was early 1995, I had recently signed for Manchester United, and it was my England debut, against Uruguay. I was a sub. I came on for Sheringham (then at Spurs), after about 70 minutes. You’ll need to understand what was in my head at that moment to get even close to comprehending my reaction to what happened next.
I was so nervous it was frightening. This was the culmination of a lifetime of ambition. You hear the cliché, “It means everything to play for my country”. But trust me, it did. Not just for me, but for my family, my parents especially, who had endured all kinds of hardships to give us the chances we had. Becoming a pro had been incredible. Now the magnitude of playing for England was indescribable. The moment has arrived.
I walk on to the pitch, 60,000 or so watching. Sheringham is coming off. I expect a brief handshake, a “Good luck, Coley”, something. I am ready to shake. He snubs me. He actively snubs me, for no reason I was ever aware of then or since. He walks off. I don’t even know the bloke so he can’t have any issue with me. We’re fellow England players, it is my debut and he snubs me.
You know what my immediate thoughts were? “Jesus Christ! How many people just saw Teddy Sheringham do that to me?” I was embarrassed. I was confused. And there you have it. From that moment on, I knew Sheringham was not for me.
Two years later, in summer 1997, after Eric Cantona left United, Sheringham arrived. We played together for years. We scored a lot of goals. I never spoke a single word to him.
People wonder how on earth we could function like that. Gary Pallister once said to me: “I know you don’t speak to Teddy and he doesn’t speak to you, but at least you play well together.” We did, and I wouldn’t ever cast aspersions on Sheringham’s talent as a top-rate footballer for his clubs and country. I’ve just loathed him personally for 15 years.