A man accused of murdering 25-year-old British soldier Lee Rigby on a London street says he attacked the first serviceman he spotted, saying "it was almost as if Allah had chosen him."

Britain Soldier Killed

Lee Rigby was killed near Woolwich Barracks in London on May 23, 2013. (Toby Melville/Reuters)

Michael Adebolajo told police in an interview played Thursday at his trial that he and his co-accused decided a soldier was "the most fair target because he joins the army with kind of an understanding that your life is at risk."

"We sat in wait and it just so happened that he was the soldier that was spotted first," Adebolajo said in the police interview.

Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale are accused of running Fusilier Lee Rigby down with a car before hacking him to death with knives and a meat cleaver near Woolwich Barracks in London on May 22.

In the interview, Adebolajo described himself as a soldier in a war between Muslims and the British people and said that after mowing Rigby down, he had tried to cut the soldier's jugular because it was the most humane way of killing him.

"We did not wish to give him much pain," he said.

Jurors at the trial also heard how a search of Adebolajo's father's house turned up a cache of extremist literature, including "Extreme Islam" and works by Anwar al-Awlaki, an American-born al-Qaeda leader who was killed in 2011 in a drone strike in the mountains of Yemen.

In Adebowale's apartment, investigators found a computer and flash drive with material on jihad and martyrdom.

Adebolajo, 28, and 22-year-old Adebowale have pleaded not guilty to murder. Defence lawyers are expected to begin their case next week.