Cole confirms West Ham departure

West Ham have opted not to retain striker Carlton Cole, who confirmed he is to leave Upton Park.

Carlton Cole has announced that he has been released by Premier League side West Ham for a second time.

The striker originally left Upton Park at the end of the 2012-13 season, but was re-signed by manager Sam Allardyce in October 2013 to help alleviate a shortage of strikers.

Cole has featured sparingly for West Ham this term, though, and just eight of his 23 Premier League appearances came from the start.

"Looking forward to my next adventure. I have spoken to West Ham United and it has been decide not to extend my contract," he wrote on Twitter.

"I wish West Ham United all the best and I will look out for their progress in the future. Thanks for a great 9 years. it's been emotional."

Cole, who scored three league goals this season, almost joined fellow Premier League side West Brom in the last transfer window but the move fell through.