Retired soccer star Ashley Cole has described the terrifying moment he thought he was “going to die” as ruthless thugs raided his London home while his girlfriend and their son hid in the closet.
A video clip of the former Arsenal and Chelsea defender was shown at Nottingham Crown Court on Tuesday, in which he spoke of the horrific raid on his south London home, the Guardian reported.
In the video, Cole told police, “I was on my knees, waiting to be killed… I would never see my children again.”
The soccer star-turned-coach said at least four men broke into his property on January 21, 2020, shortly after he got home from a game just after 9 p.m.
Sharon Cano – who shares two children with Cole – said she grabbed her six-year-old son and ran to the closet as soon as she heard strange noises outside their house. BBC News reports that their four-year-old daughter stayed in the living room with Cole.
The gang was allegedly armed with a sledgehammer and threatened to cut the former athlete’s fingers with pliers during the raid.
“I was brave, not wanting to show our daughter that I was afraid for our lives,” Cole said, according to ITV News.
Curtis Dilks, 34, faces three counts of conspiracy to commit burglary, four counts of diversion of criminal property, three counts of conspiracy to commit burglary, and two counts of burglary.
In the pre-recorded interview, Kanu recalled seeing Cole on his knees with his hands tied with thick cable ties behind his back.
Nine other men are also on trial for their alleged role in a series of robberies that were “mercilessly executed”, according to BBC News.
Cole, a three-time Premier League champion, enjoyed an impressive career on the football field before hanging up his boots in 2019.
The former player also has one win in the Champions League, one win in the European League, and seven victories in the FA Cup. He now coaches Everton Football Club.
The trial is continuing.