Premier League: Joe Cole aiming to be invaluable for Aston Villa after debut against Burnley

Villa's Joe Cole celebrates after scoring the opening goal with a goal-poacher finish
Image: Joe Cole: Celebrates after scoring the opening goal at Burnley

Joe Cole is hoping to prove himself a valuable asset for Aston Villa after making a real impact in the draw against Burnley.

The 33-year-old midfielder has had to bide his time since joining Villa from West Ham in the summer but could not have done much more on his first Premier League start for the club.

Cole linked up brilliantly with Gabriel Agbonlahor, Tom Cleverley and Andreas Weimann as the league's lowest scorers put on a display of attacking intent and scored his first goal for 11 months late in the first half.

Villa deserved their lead but they lost their impetus after a tiring Cole went off midway through the second half and Danny Ings earned the hosts a 1-1 draw with an 87th-minute penalty.

It's a short career and you want to play football. I'm just disappointed we didn't get the three points, which would have made it a cracking day for everyone.
Joe Cole

Cole said: "It's always nice to score your first goal for your new club and to score it on my first league start was great.

"It's been a long time. I've had a few niggly injuries and things but I'm just here to play football. I want to help the club and help the young players with my experience and my performances.

"It's a short career and you want to play football. I'm just disappointed we didn't get the three points, which would have made it a cracking day for everyone.

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"I enjoyed it. I like playing with Gabby - and we've also got Christian (Benteke) to come back into the team  - and Tom and Westy (Ashley Westwood) and Carlos (Sanchez) and Andi.

Paul Lambert felt his Aston Villa side dominated the game against Burnley for 80 minutes and should have won

"We've got good players at the club and we've got a good manager, and we just need to put that together.

"We know we're not a top-six side at the moment. We've got to make sure we survive in this league first and foremost and then we'll go on from there."

Satisfied

Having looked comfortable until Jores Okore conceded the penalty for bringing down Lukas Jutkiewicz, Villa could easily have lost the game. 

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Ings hit a post and Jutkiewicz missed the target with a header from six yards in a frantic finale that also saw Villa substitute Jack Grealish test Tom Heaton.

Cole said: "Performance-wise, I think we dominated the first 60 or 70 minutes, passed the ball well, defended well and we looked like a team that was building a bit of confidence.

"In the end, it was a bit erratic in the last five or 10 minutes when Burnley came into the game - both teams would take a point. We probably were the better side but we need to turn those draws into wins."

Villa's nine-game winless run stretches back to mid-September and fans called for the head of manager Paul Lambert after Ings' equaliser.

The game came only a day after assistant manager Roy Keane resigned, citing the demands of his role with the Republic of Ireland national team.

Cole insisted that had not had an effect, saying: "It's a Premier League club, things happens, things go up and down, people come and people go. We just focused on performing and I thought the boys played well."

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