How Liverpool are relying on one much maligned ex player in the title race

West Ham striker Andy Carroll, signed from Liverpool at the start of the season, has a chance to do a favour for his former club.

For Liverpool this Sunday, it will very much be a case of doing their job, and then hoping for a miracle in Manchester.

After weeks where the Reds seemed to be worming their way to a glorious league championship, Liverpool will go into the final day very much the underdogs in the title challenge following their 3-3 draw at Crystal Palace.

Manchester City's 4-0 win over Aston Villa left them needing just a point against West Ham United at the weekend to secure first position in the Premier League.

Liverpool host Newcastle United, with a quite impossible double figures win the only other way the Reds might sneak first spot.

So Liverpool will be hoping West Ham can sneak the victory that will see them spoil the Citizens' party, much like QPR nearly did two years ago. For them to do that, they will need one player in particular to have the game of his season, and he will be a player Liverpool will be very familiar with.

Because at one point, they shelled out £35 million for him.

It is a figure often thrown at Andy Carroll with some derision, somehow a kind of proof that he is a sham of a player, a waste of space.

That couldn't be further from the truth, with the former Newcastle man, who has suffered so badly with injuries over the last few seasons, still one of the finest English strikers around. What's more, there are few other centre forwards as capable of destroying a defence to the degree he can - and he proved it last weekend as he ran Tottenham's defence a merry goose chase on the way to a 2-0 win.

Carroll's greatest day in a Liverpool shirt was a brace against City in 2011, his first two goals for the club. 

And though he didn't manage to come good while turning out at Anfield, if he gives Vincent Kompany anywhere near the kind of troubles he did on that day, he may still go down in the club's folklore.

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