|Date of Birth||
6 January 1989
|Place of Birth||
1.91 m (6'3")
Andrew Thomas Peter "Andy" Carroll (born 6 January 1989) is an English footballer who played as a striker for Liverpool from 2011 until 2013. He currently holds the record as Liverpool's record signing, costing the club £35,000,000, which also makes him the most expensive British footballer in history. Despite the large sum of money invested in Carroll, his Liverpool career proved to be a disappointing one with him only netting 11 goals in 58 games- just six of which came in the Premier League. He sealed a transfer to West Ham in the summer of 2013, with Liverpool accepting a £20,000,000 loss on the player.
On 31 January 2011- the deadline day of the 2011 January transfer window- Liverpool, in an unanticipated move, approached Newcastle with the intention of signing their young striker Andy Carroll. Liverpool had just lost their only senior striker Fernando Torres in a £50,000,000 deal to Chelsea earlier in the day. Although close to sealing the signing of Luis Suarez for £23,000,000, the Liverpool hierarchy were very keen for Liverpool to procure another forward to aid the club in their ailing 2010-11 season. Director of football Damien Comolli was given the green light to invest all the money obtained from the sale of Torres to ensure this happened before the close of the transfer window later that day. He reportedly made unsuccessful moves for strikers such as Mario Gomez and Fernando Llorente before approaching Newcastle for Carroll. Carroll had been a revelation in the first half of the Premier League season- his first substantial forrays into top flight football- and Newcastle were not keen on the idea of selling. A series of bids were rejected until they finally accepted a deal worth in excess of £35,000,000- a British and Liverpool transfer record.
The circumstances surrounding Carroll's eventual departure from Newcastle were controversial. Officially, Carroll handed in a transfer request to push through the move when Newcastle were holding firm and rebuffing Liverpool's approaches. It was later claimed by a journalist who knows Carroll that Carroll had sent him text messages expressing his dismay at leaving his boyhood club, and suggested that Newcastle forced him into handing in a transfer request in order to placate the inevitable backlash from the Newcastle fans at the prospect of the club selling their young star.
Regardless, upon signing Carroll enthused "It's just a great feeling [to sign for Liverpool]. Liverpool is a massive club and it's nice to be wanted by a club like this... When I knew it [Liverpool's interest] was real and that there was a chance for me to come here I knew it was a great opportunity and I had to take it." Due to injury, Carroll had to wait until 6 March 2011 to make his Liverpool debut- coming as a second half substitute in a 3-1 home win against Manchester United. His first start for the club was the 0-0 tie against F.C. Braga on 17 March in the Europa League, resulting in an aggregate 0-1 loss. After a few weeks on the sidelines due to injury, Carroll scored his first two Liverpool goals in a 3-0 victory over Manchester City on 11 April. He spent much of the rest of the 2010-11 season on the sidelines due to knee problems.
Carroll scored his first competitive goal of the 2011-12 season in the League Cup during a 3-1 victory against Exeter City on 24 August 2011. He scored his first League goal of the season on 1 October 2011, away at Everton in the Merseyside Derby as he slotted in a Jose Enrique cross from close range.
On 29 November 2011, Carroll started against Chelsea in the League Cup quarter final tie at Stamford Bridge, having been left out of the starting line up for the club's previous two matches. Liverpool won a penalty early in the first half which Carroll took, however his fiercely-struck effort was straight down the middle and well saved by Chelsea 'keeper, Ross Turnbull.
Carroll failed to hold down a regular place in the starting XI during the first part of the season as he struggled for form and goals. He did however string together some fine perfermonces early in 2012. On 28 January, Carroll played a starring role in Liverpool's 2-1 victory over Manchester United at Anfield. His flick-on in the 87th minute put Dirk Kuyt through on goal to score the winner. He then followed up this performance three days later away to Wolves, where he scored the opener in a 3-0 win- this also marked Carroll's one-year anniversary as a Liverpool player. Liverpool fans voted Carroll man of the match for both of these games as Carroll himself declared his satisfication that his form was returning, and stated that he felt very happy at the club.
After again finding himself in a run of being in and out of the starting XI, Carroll started Liverpool's game away to Newcastle on 1 April 2012- this being his first return to St. James' Park since his transfer. Carroll was heckled throughout by the Newcastle fans and after being subbed halfway through the second half, he threw his shirt to the ground in anger and stormed straight down the tunnel. His next start came on 10 April away to Blackburn. In an eventful game, Carroll netted the winner for 10-man Liverpool in injury time- a header from close range to seal a dramatic 3-2 victory for the Reds. This also marked Carroll's 50th appearance in a Liverpool shirt. Carroll repeated this feat four days later in the FA Cup semi-final tie against Everton at Wembley. With the score level at 1-1, Carroll rose highest to nod in a Craig Bellamy free kick in the 87th minute to seal Liverpool's place in the 2012 FA Cup Final.
Carroll was left out of the starting XI for the final against Chelsea, who punished a lacklustre Liverpool by claiming a 2-0 lead within the first 60 minutes. Carroll was brought on for Jay Spearing and netted in the 64th minute after some neat footwork in the box outdid Chelsea defender John Terry allowing him to hammer a shot high into the net. His introduction and goal revitalised Liverpool, and Carroll thought he'd equalised in the last 10 minutes when his header was clawed from under the bar by Cech. The linesman correctly ruled the ball hadn't fully crossed the line, and Chelsea went on to hold on to win 2-1.
Despite the optimism Carroll's end of season form brought Liverpool fans regarding the big number 9's future at Anfield, when Kenny Dalglish was replaced as manager by Brendan Rodgers, it became apparent that Carroll might not feature in the new coach's plans due to a clash of playing styles. Having failed to use the opportunity at a press conference on 9 July 2012 to vouch for Carroll's Anfield future, speculation was immediately rife that Liverpool were actively looking to move Carroll on. Bids from both West Ham and former club Newcastle shortly followed.
On 30 August 2012, Liverpool confirmed that Carroll had signed for West Ham United on a season long loan deal. At the end of the season, it was reported that Liverpool and West Ham had agreed a fee of £15,500,000 for the permanent transfer of Carroll, however Carroll himself stalled on making a decision whether to accept the move. It was reported that Carroll was very keen to be given the opportunity to prove he could be a success at Liverpool, but if not, he favoured a move back to former club Newcastle. Carroll eventually agreed to join West Ham, and the permanent transfer was confirmed on 19 June 2013.
Although his Anfield career failed to deliver, Carroll did enjoy a level of aduration from the Kop who would often sing 'Sweet Carroll 9' (to the tune of Neil Diamond's 'Sweet Caroline'). Many willed Brendan Rodgers to give Carroll his chance at the club, and when he sealed his move to West Ham, a number of Liverpool fans took to social media to wish Carroll well for the future.
Due to Carroll's size he shows skill in the air with headers. His strength, powerful shots with both feet, and lauded heading ability make him a classic number 9 striker.
At £35,000,000 Carroll became the most expensive British football player ever. This was also the highest fee paid for a player by Liverpool, beating Fernando Torres' transfer fee of £22,000,000 and Luis Suarez' £22,800,000 transfer, completed only hours before Carroll's. This made him the ninth most expensive footballer of all time.
- League Cup: 1 (2012)
- PFA Championship Team of the Year (1): 2009–10
- Jackie Milburn Trophy – 2007
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