Wednesday, September 5

Carroll out for six weeks

Andy Carroll's hamstring injury is likely to keep him out for five to six weeks. A big blow but at least with the fortnight's international break it means he'll only miss four games. A good chance for Cole, Maiga and Vaz Te to produce in his absence. Meanwhile the Sun claims that Carroll himself insisted that a clause was inserted in his contract giving Liverpool the option of recalling him in January, so confident was he of proving Brendan Rodgers and the Moneyball men wrong. David Gold for his part says that the contract's details can not be revealed. It would certainly be humiliating for the Liverpool gaffer to recall a striker he was so keen to show the door to, but not impossible. The biggest worry is that Liverpool continue to lose, Rodgers is sacked and a new manager — say Harry Redknapp — immediately wants to recall Carroll. We'll have played 21 games by Jan 1, so let's hope the reborn Geordie has done enough to have cemented West Ham's place in the Premier League by then. But if we can keep him for the whole season then, as Big Sam says, we really can look towards a possible top half finish (or more realistically the top of the bottom mini-league). With Carroll up front it surely takes West Ham up a notch from the level of Villa, Wigan, Norwich, Swansea, Fulham, Reading, Southampton and West Brom.

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