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West Ham: Allardyce had a nightmare with Andy Carroll signing

West Ham United have certainly had a chequered history when it comes to recruitment in the GSB era – particularly with regards to centre-forwards – with a whole host of additions having failed to make the grade in east London in recent times.

One of the more high-profile, unsuccessful recruits of the last decade was that of Andy Carroll, with the 6-foot-4 marksman having endured an injury-hit seven-year stay with the Hammers after initially joining on loan from Liverpool in 2012.

The Reds had been keen to offload the Englishman after just 18 months at Anfield, having previously been signed for a sizeable £35m fee from Newcastle United on deadline day back in January 2011.

With credit still in the bank from his time at St James’ Park – where he had scored 17 goals in the second tier during the 2009/10 season – Sam Allardyce no doubt believed he could help revive the forward’s fortunes upon his move to the Irons.

A promising 2012/13 season saw the nine-cap England international net seven Premier League goals in his debut campaign in the capital, with West Ham subsequently forking out £15m to sign him on a permanent deal.

That decision no doubt backfired as he struggled for both form and fitness over the next few years, failing to ever reach double figures for goals in any of his seven seasons in a claret and blue jersey.

Was it a mistake to sign Andy Carroll?





His best return of nine league goals came during the 2016/17 season under Slaven Bilic, with the Gateshead-born powerhouse notably netting a sensational overhead kick in a victory over Crystal Palace in that campaign.

Such a staggering, acrobatic effort proved just how “unplayable” he could be at his best – as lauded by teammate Aaron Cresswell – albeit with the forward never managing to stay fit for long enough to deliver the goods on a consistent basis.

Dogged by injuries throughout his time at the club – particularly in the final few years – Carroll was restricted to just 16 and 12 league outings respectively in his final two seasons at the London Stadium, before finally departing on a free transfer in 2019.

Losing the striker for nothing represented a notable loss from the Hammers’ initial investment, albeit the club were likely no doubt happy to have him off the books, with his form since that departure having vindicated their decision to let him leave.

A subsequent return to the North East saw the £540k-rated man score just once in two seasons with Tynesiders, while last term saw the 33-year-old net just five league goals in the Championship across spells at Reading and West Bromwich Albion.

Now without a club, it has been a rather dismal decade for the once-promising talent, with the Irons no doubt regretting their decision to have invested so heavily in him all those years ago.