Sam Allardyce has quashed suggestions that West Ham United made a mistake signing Andy Carroll last summer, stressing that the entire club wanted the striker at Upton Park.
After failing to establish himself at Liverpool following his £30 million move from Newcastle United in January 2011, the 25-year-old moved to West Ham on loan for the 2012-13 campaign, where he scored seven goals in 24 games to earn a permanent £15 million switch the next summer.
However, the England international has since seen several injuries disrupt his time at the club, with heel and ankle problems restricting him to just 15 games last season, before later sidelining him until November this term.
Allardyce, though, has insisted that Carroll was a worthwhile buy, while also backing the front man to prove his price tag once he returns to the setup.
‘Everyone wanted to sign Andy Carroll when he finished the season, everybody,’ he told reporters.
‘There wasn't one person from the owners to any members of staff who didn't want to sign him.
‘What we have to hope is eventually we will get him fit and he will produce a full season for us. We know what a big player he is for us. We know what effect he has on our team but what effect he has against the opposition.
‘When they see him on the team sheet he strikes fear into every defence in the Premier League, no matter how good they are.’
Despite the £12 million addition of Enner Valencia, Carroll’s absence over the coming months has prompted West Ham to dip back into the market for help up top, with Metz’s Senegalese striker Diafra Sakho arriving this week after reported moves for Stoke’s Peter Crouch, FC Basel’s Marco Streller and Sunderland’s Connor Wickham were all rebuffed.
The club do boast firepower elsewhere, with versatile Argentine Mauro Zarate arriving from Velez Sarsfield this summer, but whether those signings will prove enough to improve upon last season’s 13th-place finish remains to be seen.