Date: 25th April 2008 at 9:58am
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Andrew Cole, now 36 may well be considering retiring from football after a long and successful career but will that decision be made based on what Burnley FC would like him to do? He is of course currently on loan with the club from Sunderland until the end of the season and has made a pretty good impact since coming to Turf Moor although has been dogged by injury and the recurrence of his niggling Achilles injury problem in recent times.

The injury has basically meant he has only been able to make 5 starts in 12 games since arriving at the club.

Nevertheless he has now scored 5 goals for the club since arriving in January, the most memorable being his hat-trick in the match away to QPR in February this year when the Clarets came away with all three points in a 4-2 victory. Ade Akinbiyi got the other goal in that match and probably his partnership with Ade has been the most effective in the games so far. They were former team mates together at Bristol City and they seemed to have developed a good understanding between each other.

So what will the striker decide in the close season, will he hang up his boots or will he be persuaded to play for at least one more season and can Burnley tempt him to sign for them on a permanent basis?

It won`t be for the want of the trying if the glowing tributes from Owen Coyle and Clarke Carlisle are anything to go by.
Owen Coyle had this to say about the former Manchester United player and England International:

‘I think he’s loved every minute of this football club, albeit it’s been a bit stop-start with that niggling Achilles.

‘But he’s shown when he’s fully fit and on the pitch, what he brings to any football team, so I would envisage that Andrew would probably want to play on next season.’

Earlier in the week, Carlisle also encouraged the striker to consider playing on:

‘He is a man of immeasurable and undoubted quality, and for anyone to have a player of his calibre in the squad can only be of benefit,’ said Carlisle.

He is wondering whether to finish at the end of the season or not, and I’m sure we, as players, won’t be the first to know. That’s something for him to decide for himself and discuss with his family in coming weeks, and probably over the summer.

‘But having him around, even if he can only play in half of the games, it can only benefit us for the games when he is available.’

What do you think, should we offer him a new one year contract should he want to play-on? What would that mean for Coyle`s intention to bring down the average age of the squad? Should he simply call it a day and maybe join the backroom staff and help out on the coaching side? Tell us what you think below and also vote in our forum poll.