The Liverpool FC Forum > Opinion

Scribes Q&A: Part I of several. Join in!

(1/6) > >>

StevenLFC:

note from Hinesy: This is part one of occasional internal spyin' kop type threads which are generated in the Writers Forum and brought over. Please join in, especially during the international break when this will remain stickied



This weeks subject will be Andy Carroll, as he seems to divide opinion.

1. Cast your mind back to January 31st. Liverpool have announced that Fernando Torres wants to leave and is about to join Chelsea. News then breaks that Liverpool have had a bid accepted for Newcastle striker Andy Carroll. What were your initial thoughts about us replacing Torres with Carroll?

2. Do you think the 35M price tag is a burden for Liverpool & Carroll?

3. How would you describe Andy's performances thus far?

4. What would you describe as Andy Carroll's strengths and weaknesses?

5. Some people say Andy Carroll needs to adapt to Liverpool, others say Liverpool need to adapt to Andy Carroll. Most think it's a bit of both, what are your thoughts?

6. Finally, how do you see Andy doing for the rest of this season, and looking further forward, his Liverpool career?

Veinticinco de Mayo:
1 & 2.  Too many emotions spinning around to be able to nail one to the mast really.  Gutted about Torres leaving, but pleased with the price we got for him, happy about us moving very quickly to sign a promising young player with Prem experience, less impressed with how much he cost.  It's all well and good to justify his price in terms of the Torres money but the headline fee was always going to weigh heavily around his neck.  And sure enough it is even now impossible to have a conversation about the lad without the fee cropping up within the first few lines.

3.  Patchy.  In general we look a better side without him in it.  There are signs of improvement though.

4.  Strengths?   Drinking, clubbing...  Strong, tall, good header of the ball, good passer of the ball, great shot. 
    Weaknesses?  On his heels too often, first yard is not in his head, movement could be better, shit taste in music, needs haircut


5.  He needs to adapt to the way that Kenny wants him to play.  This is true for everyone at the club. 


6.  That is the sixty million dollar question.  Hopefully the recent signs of improvement are just the start and he kick on from that goal at Goodison

lachesis:
1. I was pleased to have an end to the Torres saga. Best days were behind him and he had been lacking commitment to the cause for so long that I had tired of his petulance and shitty attitude long before his departure.

I thought it was a gamble on Carroll. The second season syndrome is often talked about with regards to new strikers in the league. Having said that, looking at his attributes I wasn't disappointed we were getting him.

Let's be honest even John Carew could have done the job Torres had been doing for us for a few months up top (probably minus the histrionics as well). Even if Carroll did fail, it would just be the same as having Torres up front with an additional 15 million in the coffers (ok, maybe a bit harsh Torres did show a glimmer of his genius every now and again but it was very rarae in the latter stages of his days with us. I couldn't justify us keeping him on the basis that he may or may not decide to want to play again. Looking at how things are going at Chelsea from afar admittedly it doesn't seem we are missing much)



2. Yes, no doubt. And not because I'm expecting a massive premium top echelon player to be ripping up grass every game but because the money could have been utilised elsewhere and improved a lot of other positions. There is a sort of 'here's what you could have' when looking at the outlay spent on Downing for example. Could we have got a striker in the mould of Carroll cheaper and really invested in a wide position where the premiums these days seem to be?

Not that I'm implying Downings a bad player per se, but certainly not in the top bracket and in my opinion does not have the necessary time or skills to make it into that bracket despite being a very solid player.

Having said that we have to temper it with realism. We are buying British so this adds an instant 3-5 million on the price. Aguero may have gone for more or less the same in transfer fee but the wage demands of the two players will be very different. We can be prepared to break transfer records but the model we use relies on a stern wages structure it appears.

It has also long been said that we are short on funds and we have often said we haven't had investment in playing personnel. The owners have invested heavily in Henderson and Carroll so when other clubs, media and pundits are seeing this money spent on two players that so far have not impressed, the question turns to one of having the money but not using it wisely - this is not a new claim and it means old arguments and shitty articles are regurgitated.



3. Disjointed is probably the best I can say. He is still learning to play with his team mates. It doesn't help that I don't feel we send enough crosses in from high enough up the pitch. It doesn't help that Adam generally stays outside the box and Lucas doesn't make the late runs as often as I feel he should to support Carroll (given his excellent heading ability). This often leaves him isolated in the box and when it comes in he'll generally have to beat his marker and then challenge for the header anyway hoping to get a nod on it. We dont really create those golden headed chances for him.

In contrast to that though I feel much was made of the fact that he isn't just a 'head on a stick' and he has more about him in the foot department. He has a rasping strike and I don't think we've seen much of that from him either. He's getting bogged down in the area from the edge of the centre cirle to the 18 yard line and I'm not sure why.

Didn't watch him much at Newcastle but he does seem to get a lot of free kicks given against him. Some warranted when seen again, but a lot not really and doesn't seem to get the same level of protection.



4. Strengths - I think his main strength is his all round ability. I don't look at him and think he has one stand out trait that elevates him into a top category yet. But he has the potential in his heading and shooting form range to become one of the best.
   Weaknesses - I can't really think of one but as VdM points out above he does have a quality of that one yard too late syndrome. Whether this is because he is still gelling with team mates is too early to call though. Needs to take a chance more often - he might even turn some poor crosses into good ones doing this.



5. We both need to adapt. Carroll is playing with better players here and whereas other teams playing Newcastle may give him more space or time, he won't have that luxury while playing for the bigger clubs. They will generally sit deeper and pay more attention to him especially if deployed as the main and lone striker. I know people are excited about the Suarez/Carroll partnership but honestly if Suarez wasn't blessed with such individual skill and talent I think we'd feel a little bit more deflated about the prospects for it just now.

I feel our crossing at the moment is a bit haphazard, there isn't a routine to it which means Andy probably struggles to determine what position to take up because by and large he's unsure of where it is going to end up. We can either let this develop organically or I guess we could insist that certain crossers always aimed for a specific spot, although this means it could be easier to defend against (I think there was a case where Allardyce used to get all his players to stand on the front post from corners in a similar tactic - but only from set pieces). All in all I feel the latter can take you so far but you really need to cultivate the understanding and partnerships between players to be dynamic and play the opponent as it were.



6. I'm not fully convinced he is back to full fitness yet. I'd like the derby goal to give him some confidence and for him to start the next game like a player possessed but ultimately I can't see it happening. I'd say he needs about 3-5 games without any setbacks to get sharp and what I'd consider match fit.

Looking at how things are shaping up I reckon we'll see round about 12/13 league goals from him this season, in terms of forging links with the other strikers and being the anchor in our front line I'm not so sure about yet. As of now he is probably an 'option' and his goal will be to cement himself as a surefire starter as Suarez has already done.

No666:

1. Cast your mind back to January 31st. Liverpool have announced that Fernando Torres wants to leave and is about to join Chelsea. News then breaks that Liverpool have had a bid accepted for Newcastle striker Andy Carroll. What were your initial thoughts about us replacing Torres with Carroll?

I was pleased we were replacing Torres immediately with an 'up and coming' name, because it signified a statement of intent from the owners - not merely that they were reinvesting incoming funds unlike the last lot but also that they were not prepared to be put at the disadvantage of losing a striker in the middle of the season. That was an important statement to make about our ambition and our balls. I'm not sure all of us have been singing from that same hymn sheet since then. If we should have learnt anything from Torres's time with us, it is that no individual should be lauded to the detriment of the collective. We were so lucky to have him, to have kept hold of him in 2010... And soon enough he bought into that view. It riles me today to see pundits like Hansen - who should be steeped in the old adage that the club is bigger than the individual - telling us how lucky we are to have Suarez. Won't take much and he'll start believing it, too.

I'm sorry that this is off at a tangent - and I don't have much to say about Carroll. I haven't seen enough of him. He scarcely played last season after all. My honest reaction to him would be: he needs a lot of support from the stands because he clearly is fragile, and we can start forming an opinion in three months' time.

Hinesy:



This weeks subject will be Andy Carroll, as he seems to divide opinion.

1. Cast your mind back to January 31st. Liverpool have announced that Fernando Torres wants to leave and is about to join Chelsea. News then breaks that Liverpool have had a bid accepted for Newcastle striker Andy Carroll. What were your initial thoughts about us replacing Torres with Carroll?

I was wary but understood the need to immediately replace Torres. I was happy we brought in someone who'd played in the PL and could score. Obviously injured but to be honest the headfuck of Torres leaving clouded anyone's replacement unless it was going to be Messi, rather than messy.

2. Do you think the 35M price tag is a burden for Liverpool & Carroll?
Burden? Not sure. Perhaps, insomuch as the price one pays pre-defines the expectations. That said, most reasonably educated fans knew the situation he was purchased in. In a normal transfer window, I would've expected to pay no more than 20m for him.

3. How would you describe Andy's performances thus far?
He looks bewildered and isn't match fit. That said, the only intelligent piece of punditry from Shearer, ever, pointed out his running and expectation of quick crossing which isn't happening for him at the moment. That said, he's not played enough for me to totally decide but I guess that answer alone demonstrates my doubt.
4. What would you describe as Andy Carroll's strengths and weaknesses? Finding space, heading, left footed, strength and nerve all good. Finesse, speed, adaptability and match fitness: bad.

5. Some people say Andy Carroll needs to adapt to Liverpool, others say Liverpool need to adapt to Andy Carroll. Most think it's a bit of both, what are your thoughts?
I think you're right.
6. Finally, how do you see Andy doing for the rest of this season, and looking further forward, his Liverpool career?
No idea, I never speculate, that way lies financial penury and humiliation from one's peers.

Navigation

[0] Message Index

[#] Next page

Go to full version