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Despite his obvious disinterest in even attempting to shoe horn former Liverpool striker Andy Carroll into the dynamic new system he drilled into his players, Reds boss Brendan Rodgers had nothing but kind words for the Geordie striker in the build up to this weekend’s meeting with West Ham United.
The former Newcastle United man, who the Reds prized away from Tyneside with an exorbitant fee, was sent out on loan to West Ham United before the Hammers stumped up £15mil to make the move permanent. With the likes of Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge – who have each scored more than 20-goals this season — at his disposal, Carroll has hardly been missed at Anfield this season, but Rodgers still thinks highly of the 25-year old.
“I’m not sure Andy will feel he has a point to prove – he knows he’s a top player, West Ham paid a lot of money for him and in the style they play he’s one of the best there is,” explained the Northern Irishman ahead his side’s trip to the Boleyn Ground on Sunday. Liverpool have had problems coping with big, physical forwards in the past, and should Carroll find the proper motivation, he could prove to be a handful for the Reds less than assured backline.
The giant Geordie scored one and set one up as Sam Allardyce’s side made it two wins on the trot with a 2-1 victory over Sunderland last time out with the 25-year old coming good against an old foe. “Andy wasn’t let go by me because he wasn’t good enough let’s get that clear” continued Rodgers. “His style of play he’s one of the best in Europe. Attacking the ball, heading, he’s outstanding.”
Should the Reds win their remaining six matches, they’ll claim their first title of the Premier League era – though few would tip West Ham to upset their run of eight wins in a row, Rodgers will be hoping that Carroll will be a tad less than outstanding against his old side. Every little bit helps, right?