Andy Carroll challenge welcomed at West Ham

West Ham striker, Carlton ColeWest Ham’s Carlton Cole says he is determined to challenge newly acquired target man Andy Carroll as the main striker at the club, according to The Sun.

The 28-year-old was dropped to the bench in West Ham’s 3-0 victory over Fulham recently, making way for Carroll to deputise for the Hammers. Despite this, Cole will have the opportunity to assert himself as the main striker at the club when West Ham travel to Norwich in Saturday’s early kick-off after Carroll limped off on debut, picking up a hamstring injury which had initially ruled the target man out for six weeks – although he may return more quickly than anticipated.

Cole sees competition for places at the Hammers both good for himself personally and the club, “Every year, you have to have people challenging for places because it is healthy for the club.” The former England international Cole was an integral part of West Ham’s promotion back to the Premier League last season, and admits he is pleased to see Carroll arrive at the Boleyn Ground, “It’s better to always be on your toes and I welcome a challenge like Andy. He is one of the best target men around in the Premier League and it’s just going to reinvigorate me to be a better player.”

Cole also says he is delighted by the return of Yossi Benayoun at the club, who has joined on loan from Chelsea, “I played for a season with him before he went off to Liverpool but he was really influential around the players and the team.”