Brendan Rodgers clearly wants shot of Andy Carroll but the owners are not going to accept selling him at his true value (say £12-15mill?) and taking such a hit on the balance sheet. Therefore a loan option is the obvious solution and unsurprisingly we are one of the teams mentioned.
The question is should we be?
There is no doubt Andy is a damned good player – we all know it, we have seen him at his best. It is only the £35mill price tag that puts peoples back up and leads to the stick that he gets. With the seeming demise of the Luuk de Jong transfer (at least temporarily) and the moving on of three, albeit second rate, forward options (Best, Lovenkrans & Ranger?) we do need a forward.
During Ramadan and possibly the African nations, we will be left with one man standing, the incomparable Shola, and that is if his famous hip stands up. It is too much of a risk and surely we need another quality forward. We have so many games potentially next season and our Senegal duo may lose form, tire – all kind of scenarios that could knacker our season.
But would Andy fit in – certainly the style that Pardew professes to play does preclude a big forward but the reality is he mixes styles and confessed last season he would like to see some more ‘bread & butter’ goals ie headers from corners, crosses etc: No doubt Andy is as good as anyone at that.
Finally, it would fit in to Ashley’s philosophy. Aside from his smugness at receiving £35mill and still getting the player it stops the necessity of panic buying a forward, takes the pressure off and we can wait for his/Pardew’s/Carr’s choice. He has done it before.
For Andy Carroll it would be surely the best option – give us a season at a place he understands and then review what he does next summer. I don’t believe he will mess with the team spirit either as he has a lot to prove.
I for one think it is hardly a gamble.
Jonnie runs a walking and guiding company in the north of England. Visit his excellent website at Where2walk to find out more