Date: 29th August 2011 at 10:00pm
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You would think that any player with a £35million price tag is a certain starter. Many eyebrows were raised following Andy Carroll’s arrival from Newcastle, despite his undoubted potential. For the latter part of the 2010-2011 season, Carroll was blighted by injury in a red shirt, limiting him to sporadic appearances. Fast forward to this month and Carroll has come through a pre-season campaign unscathed and is fully fit. But it’s not been all plain sailing.

In the first league match of the season, Luis Suarez ran rings around the Sunderland defence before understandably tiring after a summer of brilliance for Uruguay at the Copa America. Carroll was unable to provide the same spark as his strike partner and as Suarez became less effective, Liverpool’s threat diminished.

The following league game saw Carroll start as a lone striker against Arsenal, but yet again it was the introduction of Suarez that changed the game – forcing a mistake for the first goal and scoring the second.

Liverpool’s best performance of the season came in the most recent league game against Bolton. Dalglish decided to leave Andy Carroll on the bench, preferring a two-pronged attack of Luis Suarez and Dirk Kuyt – a partnership which worked brilliantly in the second half of the 2010-2011 season.

The fluidity of Liverpool’s attacking play was mesmerising at times, as Stewart Downing often drifted off the left wing, Dirk Kuyt dropped deep and Luis Suarez drew defenders out of position with his menacing movement.

Without Andy Carroll on the pitch, the team didn’t rely on the easy option of hitting it long to the target man and were encouraged instead into playing more patiently.

When Carroll entered the game, with the scoreline already at 3-0, he looked sluggish. On one such occasion, Stewart Downing – who had yet another superb game – whipped in a delightful cross for the Geordie to attack, but he was caught on his heels and got nowhere near the ball.

In the absence of Luis Suarez’s darting runs, Liverpool suddenly looked a more one-dimensional and predictable team.

By all means, Andy Carroll is an excellent centre-forward. He will score many goals for Liverpool this season and in seasons to come, but from the evidence seen thus far, a Kuyt-Suarez strike pairing looks far more potent.

Which is Liverpool's best strike pair?

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54 responses to “Are Liverpool a better team without Andy Carroll?”

  1. a says:

    is anyone caring about this blog? No? K.

  2. Davie says:

    Suarez is a different player to Carrol,even a blind man could see this. I feel its to early & unfair to be already asking who would be better paired up. 35 million quid is a lot to live up to so for the time being you should stop increasing pressure on Andy Carrol its unfair.

    • Clyde says:

      @Davie: Even a blind man could see Andy Carroll is all talk and no substance. Ultra slow, blatantly overrated, technically deprived and an attitude (of the unwanted kind) to go with it. Presently, he cannot even live up to a 20 million quid player let alone equal the price we paid to bring him here.

    • Clyde says:

      Sorry, “embarrass” instead of “embarrassed”.

  3. Darren says:

    Grow up, leave him alone, and go write something useful.

  4. Johnno says:


    Carroll back to newcastle in January for around £12 million Torres back to Liverpool for around £18 million.

    You heard it here first.

    • paul p says:

      torres? wouldn’t want him back, his moment has come and gone for LFC. great start, fading finish to LFC career.
      Also, Carrol will become a good player for us, i do worry about him keeping up with fast attacks down the wing. will be interesting to see though.

      • joeymax says:

        Paul P, Johnno was just joking, and you didn’t get it. 🙂

      • Clyde says:

        @Paul P: Yep, it would be interesting to see ultra-slow Carroll do some catching up. However, before that happens, perhaps it would be advisable for you to brush up on your command of the language so that you do not embarrassed yourself further. Woefully dangerous when you cannot even tell the difference between a joke and a fact.

    • red 33 says:

      LOLLLLL….. but sounds delicious

  5. maljay says:

    Liverpool are a different team with him. It’s goiung to be a matter of horses for courses. There will be times when he gets first choice and others when he doesn’t. it depends on the opposition. Also, it’s not his fault that other players hit long balls forward for him. I hate to say it, but Carragher is the worst offender. I think that carroll, with the right service, will terrify opposing defences. Luis and gerrard operating from midfield will clean up. I’d like to see Downing staying on the left more. I don’t see any sense in this tactic of having a winger on the ‘wrong’ side so he cuts in and shoots. It’s predictable and easily defended against. the same winger on the ‘proper’ side can get to the byline and get in the type of cross that Carroll could feed off.

  6. John says:

    3 games and were reading this rubbish.

  7. Kopstar says:

    Caroll is useless sell him

  8. Jevon says:

    Kopstar is pathetic – cant shoot him. dammit

  9. purify says:

    Yes. Whatever his price tag was, he is not one of our best 11 players and shouldn’t start. Let him come off the bench and play in the FA & Carling cups until he improves.

  10. KAKA says:

    Just 3 games nd already started judging DAMN

  11. abids says:

    we don’t have keep a good player on a perticular position in other for carroll to score.he is just too lazy and complain alot.downin could score and give assist which is okay for a winnin team.suarez is notin bet a good

  12. vipakindele says:

    Even new arrival henderson has stepped up his game.Let Andy do the same,work on his movment,first touch,learn to play better with his feet not just with the head and finally stop drinking much of alcohol.He ‘ll have no rival in the world of football.Which you d best!

  13. solomon says:

    Yes, liverpool can succed without any players let alone carrol .if we are talking about liverpool players don’t ever mension carrol.

  14. Lammillionaire says:

    If you give carol 1800years he won’t improve !! Poor touches no class movements , welbeg ,and the rest are far better with there movements !
    Last season Dzeko was making some promising moves but now he really show his class ! Carol is too inferrior to lfc !! This is a Big club we need major talent or real potentials even a Ngog is better, pacheco is even better ,
    If u play agger as a striker he will make some better moves than carol ..
    Sell him and buy top 9…. A defoe ,bent , are far better than him

  15. Geovanni says:

    Remember CROUCH

  16. Lammillionaire says:

    Agger as a striker will out class carol !!! Even is laziness and over complain is affecting his deliveries !!! can’t wait to see mah fantastic captain back!!! He his the best SG !! Suarez and gerrard 100% Liverpool will be a class to man U … Man u as paraded potential youth and major match and long matches mid seasons will swallow most of them , as they won’t have same strong ending unlike Liverpool we has have options and better replacement
    My 35million man on bench makes me happy as my bench worth a 70million or so
    Mereles , Sebastian , Henderson, Kelly ,sketel , spearing , ((

  17. abids says:

    what if we playin against teams man u,man city,chelsea….etc with lot of options up front.what should will be expectin from u Mr carrol.we need u to convince us!!!please improve

  18. Maxwell says:

    Carroll is an expensive flop just like Robbie Keane was. He’ll never live up to the hype. I was glad to see him on the bench. He will be sold at a huge loss eventually.

  19. Wizdom says:

    Just to offer a different perspective.
    1. Could it be that all the Lucas haters have now chosen Andy Carroll as their replacement scapegoat?
    2. Could it be the fault of mbers of the team playing lazy air balls because they don’t yet know how to play best with Carroll yet!
    Either way you won’t know for sure after 3 games! Even the Henderson haters gave shut up for now!

  20. TroLLman says:

    Like someone above said horses for courses!

    We are obviously better with Suarez and Kuyt or soon to be gerrard and Suarez.

    But there will games we will Carroll to come in make difference with style.

    You have to he an idiot not to realise we are pretty one dimentional with Carroll upfront.

    Iv mentioned it before and I’ll say it again… He is great with both feet and can header better anyone…
    But he has one major major flaw….

    He is painfully slow!
    When he superbly lays the ball off and makes a dart for the box he is so far behind play he only gets as far as the top if the box! This is not where we need him to be receiving crosses!

    I’m hoping this down to poor fitness and he will improve!

    But untill he gets his skates on the bench is the best place for him…

    And whoever says you can’t judge him Iv been him watching pre season and 3 games into the season and he so far does not reflect a £35m player where mata and Aguero do in a shorter space of time!

  21. TroLLman says:

    Wow I just read that back to myself and I sound like I’m On drugs lol

    Appoligies I’m using the iPhone!(before the grammar police get called)

    Oh and one more thing… I thought Hendo was sheet, but Iv now realises it was not his fault!
    His strength is to play passes to players with movement, who are making runs trying get in behind the defence.. With Carroll upfront he gas not had those opportunities. On the weekend he showed this with some great passes to Suarez.
    So my appoligies to hendo it wasn’t your fault.

  22. Fa says:

    Pls and pls sell caroll or loan him to arsenal or qpr.we need a sharp strike like defoe belamy,

    • Chan says:

      Yes, loan him to the gooners. We can weaken them further and get rid of one more deadwood. YNWA.

  23. jono says:

    Do any LFC supporters actually think publicly criticizing Carroll will do anything apart from put more and more pressure on him,which will be no good for him or us.It seems some people aren’t happy unless there’s a scapegoat remember Lucas,Henderson before Saturday,even Downing was getting stick before he even played for us.To support the club you need to support the players.

    • Chan says:

      To answer your question, yes we do. How do you think we got rid of those cowboys and Roy Hodgson?

  24. Propetis says:

    wow some people just keep facking up… some of us actually learned that scouting department and coaches know better than the average supporter. lucas seemed to me like my 12 yr old sister then BOOM, what a great player. give the Geordie a break, he’ll be unleashed pretty soon, goals will come, team will learn HOW to play when he is on and we can then complain about downing not scoring goals.
    pathetic attitude guys….


  25. wizguy says:

    we should stop deceiving ourselves.caroll is a terrible play er.the earlier we realised it,the better for us. i can’t wait to see him go. come on kuyt & suarez;YNWA!

  26. Smile says:

    Andy carol need time to develop into the lfc, because there are matches in which he is physicaly fit to play very well, and there are some in which ngog should be introduced. I apeal to the manager to sign a good and sharp striker if whether, the striker is young or old, but i guest he should be very very sharp and fast, cos andy carol is not fast enough. Thank you.

    • Chan says:

      The fact is that he is here means KK is somehow forced to play him one time or another. This would be at the expense of Suarez/Kuyt/Meireles and mean potential loss of points.
      Carroll can develope but not at our expense.

  27. sadjid says:

    i would rather say suarez backed by raul. eventually gerrad will be in competition with raul for the second striker role. kuyt is also slack at times. he even misses great opportunity. something u will rarely see with raul or gerrard

  28. Lammillionaire says:

    As a matter of fact !! 1800years u will still be expecting carol to improve , players like downing haven’t scored but their movement is always promising, even if Henderson didn’t scored in the last match he would have been promising , carol as scored about 5goals in all games since anfield life — average enough but his touches , control lack of creativities, complaining too much , piss off, makes him too average !
    Carol can’t be compared with dzeko ,de natale ,defoe , even asamo gyan , he can’t live up to 3.5million not to talk of 35million expectations
    Carol is a blind business and we are console with suarez as we should agreed suarez is bought for 60million and carol is free simple

  29. Lammillionaire says:

    Let agreed that bought suarez for 60million and carol is free transfer —
    That’s is the only way you won’t expect much from him !!
    Even a jovanovic is showing intent despite his flop ,

  30. RedHeart says:

    I wonder if articles on this blog are written by Liverpool fans…..

  31. Robert says:

    the man is class. at newcastle he was a big fish and at LFC, he is struggling amongst the big guns. he is young and will adapt. he is the future no 9 for England so its great he is here at LFC rather at any of our rivals. KK will bring the best out of him. no pace but is pure power. bad first touch but that can be corrected. Suarez and Carrol combination will definetly confuse alot of defences. worked well for Spurs last season. why cant it work for us. especially with change in formation. if we can get Affellay, that will be AWESOME. we are ready to compete.

  32. Chan says:

    35 million for a sulking, one dimensional bungling player. Well that is what Carroll is at the moment. He might have potential but that is what is he is at the moment.
    I am sure it escape no one how well we played whenever he IS NOT in the team and over the last couple of games, it had proven so.
    Lammilionaire is right, even Jovanovic (who does not get much games) attitude is much better than Carroll.
    If i am KK, i would just admit i made a mistake in paying 35 mill for someone with half a season in the prem. Cheer up, he is in good company, remember Seba at Manure and Andriy at Chelski?

  33. Lammillionaire says:

    When kygiakos was in Liverpool some people where saying we should give him time !! When last have u seen a good defender making huge 3 mistakes in same week!! Away penalty in eauropa cup on thusrday , also 2 penalties against westbrom on Sunday !!
    This is Liverpool we don’t have much time to nurture when Manchester counting cups , berbatov is regarded as flop despite scoring and golden boot in his radar !!
    Carol is a watse ! Try agger there he will give you hope upfront then carol , drogba can’t dribble but you know his a threat always,
    Don’t compare Lucas and carol !! Lucas is making some defending blunt and unnecessary cards that’s why we hate him , now he corrected his wrong and upgrade !!Lucas was never sluggish, lazy and lack of ideas !!
    Even the build up goals to arsenal for meireles to get the assist it was him .
    In 3 word carol is a WAISTE– Kenny knows and comoli already using suarez to console our business as suarez would worth a 50million now

  34. Lammillionaire says:

    Kenny dagglish and comoli only use suarez to console us for brilliant business 22.5million now worth 50million in 6months
    Carol bad business 35.0million now worth 15million
    No ambitious club with love to buy carol with 20million.
    Bur a club would love to break banks for suarez — prove me wrong try mancity – suarez might go 80million !!

  35. bri says:

    Just not bothered whether carroll,s on the bench or not,or that he cost 35million or 35p.we,re winning games and playing good football,carroll,s time will come.he,s part of the squad and his price tag should,nt come into doesnt at other big clubs so why should it matter here? The henderson critics have gone quiet so the attension turns to carroll..why? Just enjoy the football we,re playing by what ever 11 players kenny puts out,stop worrying about who,s on the bench,they,re all important.anyone else think adam is looking more and more like alonso,with more goals? Even his action when he kicks the ball is simmilar.

  36. Gerrardious says:

    Most of u lot are hypocrites and such a shame to our club. I just hope players don’t read these blogs. It seems all the bulls*it by the formal owners coupled with the frustrating/comedy era of Roy has made u lot to start actin like complete idiots. ok, let me stand on ur side for a moment. Lets assume Carroll is not good enough for our club (which is very untrue), is it his fault that KD decided to splash the cash (whether overpriced or not) on him? When will u jokers get it into ur heads that the price is not meant to transform a player (seemingly from a 15m player to a 35m player as most of u expect), its only an indication of sumone’s trust in him. Carroll is not a pacey player and will never be. he’s not a fast tempo/movement player and may never be. He has his own strengths which doesnt end with nodding the ball(as most of u suggest).
    Its funny how all of u moaners seen to have lain of Adam and Henderson’s back ‘for the time being’. oh!! I almost forgot to mention Downing (even before he was signed).
    It is sheer stupidity to be slating a player after 3 games where he didnt play badly. the writer of these article is also guilty on this count.
    In conclusion, u guys should stop making scapegoats of players (especially wen they have barely played half a season). Am not sayin we should always smile and act like everything is all well n good. Am just sayin lets all be supportive, patient and optimistic before making (constructive) criticism.
    We are Lfc fans for fu*k’s sake so lets stop acting like the scum or mancs. Ynwa

  37. luke says:

    he didnt want to leave nufc simple. i wouldnt be suprised if mike ashley pulled a bit of genious out the bag and bout him back for £10m

  38. bri says:

    Ha ha ha mike ashley a genious?think nufc fans might have a different opinion.this criticism of carroll,accellerated by crapello today,does the player,kenny or the club no good what so ever.the press are weighing in with both feet now and will go looking for stories whether true or the mirror said he ,basically, “guzzled” ale all they think rooney drank water in barbados and glastonbury,where he was photographed with carroll? He,s also being criticised for his lack of me a player,well over 6 feet, who,s quick? Dont you think kenny knew that? He knew he wasnt buying usain bolt.carroll gives us a different type of attacking weapon.its early days,there are many people sharpening knives for andy,lets not have some of our own so called fans helping them. get behind him and stop cryin

  39. abids says:

    we dnt have 2wait all d year before Mr carroll prove he deserve a place in our line up….check out…….. Aguero 3game 2or 3goals a player from another league,country

  40. luke says:

    mike ashley is a multi millionaire that takes quiet a clever man. 35m for carroll is genious 21 years old half a season in premier league, thats not bad business is it. the problem with us toon fans is that we never look at the big picture. nolan is a good player but he excepted a move to a championship side what kind of ambition does that show, barton has energy on the pitch but hes trouble, enrique is terrible away from home trust me i was at the majority of away games last term. all the players ashley has bout are young talented and more importatly hungry except for (ba). carroll doesnt look like he wants to play for lfc he will leave and the only place hes goin is nufc

    • don wynne says:

      A Geordie supporting Mike Ashley? wow

      • luke says:

        best start since 95-96. in my opinion we will be up there with the reds with ben arfa fit, cabaye looks good and marveaux is a dark horse for signing of the season. good luck to the pool though my dads a scouser so ive got some love for ya.

  41. Billy says:


    Andy Carroll is the answer to the question no-one is asking.