Allardyce praises Carroll after match-winning performance

Tuesday 01 Apr 2014
Carroll celebrates his goal at Sunderland

Sam Allardyce has backed Andy Carroll to challenge for a place in the World Cup squad after turning in a number of stellar performances since returning from injury.

Allardyce was speaking after West Ham's 2-1 victory against Sunderland on Monday, in which Carroll played a pivotal role, scoring the opener, as the Hammers eased eleven points clear of the drop zone.

And now his boss says if he can keep up the good form for the remainder of the season, he has every chance of being on the plane to Brazil.

He said: "He's unique in many ways. Not many can receive the ball and head a ball as good as he does, especially with quality balls in the box. 

Fact file

  • Born: 6 January 1989
  • Place: Gateshead
  • Previous clubs: Newcastle United, Preston North End (loan), Liverpool
  • England caps: 9
  • International goals: 2

"Nobody was going to stop him for that goal. He has a lot more on the deck than people give him credit for.

"There are six games to go and I think if he continues to score, if he scores anything like he did last season - he scored eight in the last 12, I think - if he plays every week, scores goals, hopefully he'll go to Brazil."

The Hammers looked to be cruising when, after Carroll had headed them into a ninth-minute lead, Mohamed Diame doubled their advantage fives minutes into the second half.

However, substitute Adam Johnson gave Sunderland hope when he pulled a goal back 25 minutes from time to prompt a late assault.

But although Ki Sung-yueng, Connor Wickham, Fabio Borini and substitute Ignacio Scocco went close, the visitors held out to all but secure their own top-flight status - and 25-year-old Carroll's performance stole the headlines.

Since returning from a six-month injury lay-off in West Ham's 2-0 victory at Cardiff in January, Carroll has scored twice and contributed a number of assists as the Hammers have steered themselves away from danger and onto the brink of the top ten.


“He's unique in many ways. Not many can receive the ball and head a ball as good as he does, especially with quality balls in the box.”


Sam Allardyce 


And Allardyce added that the upturn in form is in no small part down to Carroll's return. 

"There are not a lot of them today, unfortunately. I used to play against them every week, Andy Carrolls, when I played many years ago. There used to be one in every side," he added.

"But there's a quality with the size and the stature of the man. It's not just a heading ability, it's an all-round quality that he has.

"He's quicker than he looks, some good hold-up play off the chest at times, takes the ball with his feet, he's got a terrific shot on him.

"He's superb in the air and he's young, so hopefully he keeps on not growing stature-wise, but growing in terms of his experience and his ability to stay fit and be an even better player than he already is."

By Jamie Reid Senior Writer