When Steve Bruce is talking like this about Andy Carroll I often mistake it for Alan Shearer
Steve Bruce has been talking about Andy Carroll on Friday.
This is just the latest of a series of interviews where the head coach has talked up so positively the free agent Newcastle signed last week.
I often think he is talking about Alan Shearer when I hear Steve Bruce going on at length about the positives of the signing.
Indeed, the signing made little sense to me at all, despite the fanfare when it was announced and the media lapping it up.
We all know that Andy Carroll can be a right handful when fully fit and playing but that is purely wishful thinking when you visit the real world.
In the past 28 months he has only started 10 Premier League games and scored three goals.
If Newcastle were in a position where they had any number of strikers and other goalscorers in the team, then signing Carroll for the season would have maybe been a decent gamble.
However, Newcastle lost their two goalscorers and have so few other goals in the team, yet they only signed Joelinton – who is only 22 and the best he has done is scoring eight goals in a season in Austria, as well as Andy Carroll.
Somebody who was injured when he signed and we were told it would take a few weeks to get fit and available, which has now become four or five weeks (five or six weeks from when he signed) before any chance of seeing him according to Steve Bruce today.
Bruce and Mike Ashley knew Dwight Gayle was injured, hasn’t been involved in pre-season and the head coach hadn’t/hasn’t even seen him train as yet, despite that we sign another injured striker with a terrible record of never being fit.
It just looks ever more like a gimmick PR signing to get headlines and divert away from the failure to properly strengthen in the summer.
Now Steve Bruce is trying to tell us that whilst Andy Carroll can’t actually play, he is having such a positive influence off the pitch.
Bruce stating: ‘The other day we had a meeting with the strikers and he had his say. The other players in the canteen all want to be around him. They are looking to feed off his experience.’
I can just imagine Muto, Almiron, Joelinton sitting around him open-mouthed, as Andy Carroll regales them with tales of all the benches he has sat on and treatment rooms he has seen.
We aren’t talking Alan Shearer the Premier League’s greatest ever striker, we are talking somebody who has started only 110 PL games since leaving Newcastle, scoring only 39 PL goals at an average of less than five a season.
As for Steve Bruce saying ‘He has know-how, knows exactly what Newcastle is about, all of that can only be a positive.’ Andy Carroll was just a kid starting out when Newcastle sold him, he only started 25 Premier League games before leaving NUFC and scored 14 PL goals.
We all want Andy Carroll (and all the other players) to do well but it is quite ridiculous to go on and on trying to convince people this is a great signing until he actually steps on a pitch and does something.
Far better for everybody, especially Andy Carroll himself, if Steve Bruce just refused to talk about him and told the media that this was the case until he was fit and available to play.
Steve Bruce talking about Andy Carroll ahead of Norwich:
“He is doing a bit of running.
“We still think he could be four or five weeks away.
“Although I think really we shouldn’t put a timescale on him.
“He will be ready and fit when he is ready.
“Timescales can leave him and everybody else disappointed.
“I am sure he will be able to play a big part and then hopefully he stays all right.
“It’s only been a week since he walked through the door.
“The other day we had a meeting with the strikers and he had his say.
“The other players in the canteen all want to be around him.
“They are looking to feed off his experience.
“He has know-how, knows exactly what Newcastle is about, all of that can only be a positive.
“The biggest positive of all is seeing him back on the training ground…because if we can get this lad fit, we know he is a smashing player as well.”
If you would like to feature on The Mag, submit your article to [email protected]