Maybe the most shameless transfer story is the one that pops up every single window, claiming that Andy Carroll is coming back to Newcastle.

Since flying away to Merseyside in Mike Ashley’s helicopter, there will have been ten transfer windows and I can guarantee you will find media claims in every single one of them that the Geordie striker was coming back to Newcastle.

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Since Sunday it has been the most ‘popular’ headline grabber as far as Newcastle related stories go…

‘Newcastle to swoop for Andy’, ‘Newcastle to take striker back home’, ‘West Ham forward on his way back to Tyneside’, Newcastle ready to match £95,000 a week Hammers striker’….and so on.

Mike Ashley is going to pay Andy Carroll £95,000 a week. Really?!!!

Whatever any of think about Carroll as a player, Ashley is never going to pay those type of wages for United’s former striker, or indeed anyone, in my opinion.

Like the rest of you I am sceptical about pretty much any transfer speculation but especially the ones where it is ‘name’ players who are out of contract and available for no fee but massive wages.

There is no chance of Mike Ashley paying them, after having his fingers burnt with the likes of Viduka and Geremi when Fat Sam duped him, no way will he go down that bath again.

The same with Andy Carroll, a player who possibly could be available at a knockdown price if the Hammers are sick of the injury prone forward.

Carroll is now 26 and is currently out yet again, this time with knee ligament trouble.

£95,000 for a player who is unlikely to be on the pitch most of the time? Oh yes, I can see Ashley lapping that one up.

The frustrating thing for anybody who ‘owns’ Andy Carroll is that he is a right handful when available.

He only started 12 Premier League games last season but scored five goals. All five of those came in December and January and directly led to West Ham picking up 10 out of 12 points in those four matches.

When he scored the last of them in January, West Ham were 7th in the table and only four points off a Champions League spot. They had 36 points from 22 games, only for Carroll to pick up that injury.

In the last 16 matches without Carroll, the Hammers only picked up two more wins and added only 11 points out of a possible 48…Big Sam keeping John Carver company in the form department.

IF Andy Carroll had stayed fit then who knows?

This isn’t our problem though and never will be, rightly or wrongly, under Mike Ashley.

I don’t have a problem with it (in terms of Carroll) but for other players, having too rigid a transfer policy is senseless if the right player comes along.

Paying £15m for Alan Shearer almost 20 (TWENTY!) years ago was brilliant business for Newcastle United and worth every penny. If another like him came along then currently there is no way Mike Ashley would allow the club to go for such a player.

You can make as many budget signings such as Riviere, Obertan and so many others, but it is counter-productive as it costs fortunes for little or no return, though the true cost of these failed signings is usually hidden away beneath the headlines.