Since leaving Newcastle, Andy Carroll seems to have suffered badly from the over hyping of his £35 million move to Anfield.
He’s had a poor season and a half with Liverpool compared to the excellent standards he achieved with relative ease at Newcastle, but with the European Championships coming up I’m wondering if he is offering enough to be called up?
Carroll made a handful of appearances the season we were relegated but bounced back with the club and scored 19 goals in the Championship, and then took the iconic number nine shirt on our return to the Premiership which he wore in 20 games scoring 11 times. Rightly or wrongly he was forced or asked to leave, depending on who you ask, and made the journey down to Liverpool for a massive £35 million.
As we all know his time on Merseyside has been anything but fruitful for the big number nine. He played well against us in their victory at Anfield in December but was an embarrassment in the return fixture at SJP when he took one of the most blatant dives the Premier League has ever seen. Recently, however, Carroll looks to have turned the corner and started to get back to his best form, just in time for the summer eh?!
So that’s where he stands with his club career, but the question is, could he make the flight to Poland and Ukraine? I have listed below who I think are definite, probable and those who are possibilities
Wayne Rooney (Manchester United)
Jermaine Defoe (Tottenham)
Peter Crouch (Stoke City)
Daniel Sturridge (Chelsea)
Danny Welbeck (Manchester United)
Bobby Zamora (Queens Park Rangers) Frazier Campbell (Sunderland)
Andy Carroll (Liverpool)
Gabriel Agbonlahor (Aston Villa) Danny Graham (Swansea) Grant Holt (Norwich) Darren Bent (Aston Villa)
For me Rooney picks himself, not that I like him at all but there isn’t any doubt that he will be going. The other striking places are up for grabs. Defoe would usually be selected BUT he hasn’t been playing and will lack match practice. Welbeck and Sturridge have been playing so maybe they both will be strongly fancied to get a place in the squad.
I can’t see places for any of the players I have struck out on the grounds of lack of fitness AND lack of experience at tournaments and I would think the greatest challenge for Crouch’s place is Carroll and vice versa. Crouch has had a solid enough season at the Britannia, but, like Stoke, has fizzled out after a long season including a tiring European campaign.
Andy Carroll on the other hand has had an on-off season with his club, which threatened to get started several times, and has recently started to find his form with a last gasp goal against Blackburn in the league, an FA Cup semi-final winner against Everton and a game changing performance in the final. When I say game changing it did change the game but sadly for Carroll not the result.
All in all I would take Carroll over Crouch because of his recent form. Like many things form is key to everything and can mean the difference between a player sniffing a goal or missing a sitter. In the Football League playoffs every year we see a surprise performance from a team who have just hit form going into the playoffs and this pushes them on to get results. I can see the same happening at the Euros for Carroll. Granted Crouch’s goal record for England is fantastic on paper but his goals have been against lesser sides, with poor, and at times, gungho defences. The only doubts I would have would be with European officials penalising Carroll’s style but in reality I think Crouch would also suffer from whistle happy refs.
I still don’t like him but I hope he packs his bags.
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