Liverpool midfielder Joe Cole has joined French champions Lille on a season-long loan deal.

The 29-year-old travelled to France yesterday to undergo a medical and, despite a late bid by Aston Villa, the player has opted to join the Ligue 1 club.

"Liverpool announced today it had finalised a deal with Lille OSC for the loan transfer of Joe Cole,'' said a club statement.

"The 29-year-old will now join the French champions for the remainder of the current campaign.''