Search

Win a £100 Amazon voucher in this week’s Recorder

On sale today

Cottee Column: West Ham’s Carroll reminds me of my hero David Cross

15:29 07 February 2013

Tony Cottee

Tony Cottee

Archant

Hammers legend Tony Cottee looks ahead to the Aston Villa clash on Sunday and assesses the ability of Andy Carroll

After the disappointment of our recent performances, especially away from home, it was vital that we got the win on Saturday and it seems to me that Andy Carroll made a real difference.

I saw him come on at Fulham on Wednesday and people were saying to me that I hope he doesn’t break down again, but I was not surprised to see him looking so fit.

Long gone are the days when we used to be strapped up, given a pain killer and told to get out on the pitch. If anything the players are given too long to get fit these days.

Andy almost scored with his first touch at Fulham, where three sloppy goals cost us again, but clearly he made a big difference against Swansea on Saturday.

He makes Kevin Nolan play better too as they have such a great understanding, but I was delighted Andy scored as if he hadn’t and then didn’t against Villa on Sunday, the doubters would be out again.

It is difficult to gauge where Carroll is in terms of Premier League strikers as his career has been hampered by injury, but when he is fit I think he is a match for any one in the league.

Comparing him to strikers of the past is difficult. Though he is an old-fashioned centre forward, I think there is so much more to his game.

The nearest comparison I can make to Carroll is David Cross, but what a comparison. Him and Pop Robson were two of my idols. ‘Crossy’ was fearless, a good target man and a great finisher.

The transfer window is now closed and though I am in favour of it because it allows youngsters more chance to play, I understand why people dislike the madness of it all.

West Ham have strengthened their squad, but for me the most important piece of business was keeping hold of Mo Diame.

Sunday’s clash at Villa is another huge one and it is on their home ground where they have struggled.

At the start of the season I would have been surprised to see them down there, but it seems their youngsters are not quite ready and the likes of Richard Dunne and Ron Vlaar have not played enough.

Christian Benteke and Charles N’Zogbia are dangerous, but with Carroll back I think West Ham can step it up and play more like they do at home.

It won’t be easy though and I will settle for a 1-1 draw.

0 comments

Latest Sport Stories

Yesterday, 15:02
Leyton Orient's new signing Ollie Palmer (second from the left) in pre-season training with the club (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Ian Hendon brings in forward with impressive goalscoring record in non league football

Ian Hendon
Yesterday, 14:35
Darius Henderson scores against Crewe Alexandra, what would turn out to be his last goal for Leyton Orient (pic: Simon O'Connor/TGSPHOTO).

Experienced forward has contract terminated by mutual consent despite having two years left to run

Darius Henderson
Yesterday, 13:00
Leyton Orient head coach Ian Hendon (pic: Simon O'Connor).

Orient head coach discusses summer business so far, returning to pre-season and meeting squad last week

Ian Hendon
West Ham United goalkeeper Darren Randolph

Hammers new goalkeeper Darren Randolph had the quietest of debuts for West Ham

Europa League

Most read sport

Competitions

Good times with Greenall's!

Good times with Greenall’s, a Great British gin sponsors Great British racing.

Read more
Escape to the picturesque sights of Cornwall

Summer is finally here, and what is the number one holiday location in the UK during the warmer months? Cornwall, of course!

Read more

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Newham Recorder e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder