From Merseyside to East London to Brazil, can Carroll get into that World Cup squad?

West Ham’s new permanent signing Andy Carroll reckons he can use the Hammers to secure a World Cup place next summer.

Carroll has finally sealed his £15 million transfer to Upton Park, after months and months of questions over whether the deal would go through or whether he’d slum it up at Anfield all over again.

Carroll now has the chance to settle down into a long term career with West Ham and it’s an opportunity he’s hoping to use to secure a place in Roy Hodgson’s World Cup squad for next summer.

It would cap a remarkable journey which saw him shunned at Liverpool by Brendan Rodgers, criticised at West Ham for his style of play but effective when he does get the chance to wear an England shirt.

“I just want to keep fit now, keep scoring goals and performing week in and week out for West Ham. If I do that here, play well and keep fit, then hopefully I will get in the England team,” said the striker.

It’s doubtful as to whether Carroll will go to the World Cup as one of the country’s main strikers as he’ll more than likely be used in more of a support role.

England have tried to play much more subtle football in the recent past which is based around more skilful forwards on the ball like Daniel Sturridge and Wayne Rooney because that’s the general direction football has taken.

If Carroll has a half decent season with West Ham then he will be on the plane because of the different option he provides off the bench or if Hodgson wants to play more direct football.

His size, strength and power are unquestioned, which means if Hodgson wants to pin back a team or thinks England will constantly need to release pressure then Carroll is the man for the job.

All you have to do is look at the way he played against Sweden in the European Championship last summer, scoring a bullet header from a direct cross when England were releasing pressure from their own defence.

However, he’s not the player who will be used if England want to go toe to toe against a more passing orientated team because that’s the same reason Brendan Rodgers didn’t want to keep him at Liverpool.

At the moment Sturridge and Rooney are probably the only England forwards who can be sure of their places at the tournament next year if England do qualify.

The only threat to Carroll’s position in that squad in terms of being the target man is Peter Crouch at Stoke City and you’d be hard pushed at the moment, considering Carroll’s impact last season, to find an England fan who would take Crouch ahead of the big Geordie.

What do you think? Should Carroll be in the World Cup squad next year?

image: © andrew_j_w

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