Premier League - Papers: Liverpool's Carroll makeover
A 12-month long diet and a change of image - including the loss of his ponytail – are part of Liverpool’s plans to get Andy Carroll firing, the Sunday People report.
The £35m January arrival has had a quiet start to his career at Anfield, netting just four times in 16 Premier League games since joining the club. He’s also fallen out of favour with Fabio Capello at international level.
Despite the 22-year-old’s relative youth, Liverpool are keen to see an upturn in his fortunes and the paper reports that his diet and drinking will be closely monitored in order to ensure the striker is in peak condition.
A source said: “Andy is happy to go along with this long training schedule Liverpool have devised for him. It’s a conditioning programme which will look at his whole lifestyle. While Carroll is obviously a big lad he is not particularly muscular and they are wanting to put this right. They are not looking to give him more bulk, but more strength.”
Kenny Dalglish has publicly backed his striker and said to ignore his hefty transfer fee.
Dalglish said: “Andy’s price-tag is only a problem for other people, not for us.
“He replaced a £50m striker which means we are £15m up on the deal – so he’s not a bad buy. Besides, we don’t look at anyone’s price.”
Ahead of the big Premier League clash between Chelsea and Liverpool at Stamford Bridge, manager Andre Villas-Boas is believed to be under pressure after a ‘frosty conversation’ with Chelsea chairman Roman Abramovich.
The Sunday Express reports that Abramovich has been disappointed with Chelsea’s start to the season and with former Chelsea manager Guus Hiddink now a free agent after leaving the Turkey job, the 34-year-old manager cannot afford to disappoint his famously trigger-happy chairman.
That said, the Sunday Mirror reports that Chelsea are still keen to splash the cash, and the Blues are said to be lining up a £20m offer for Newcastle United midfielder Cheik Tiote, who has impressed since a £3.5m move from FC Twente in the summer of 2010.
The same paper suggest that the Beckhams are already planning for life at Paris Saint-Germain with Victoria set to look at apartments in the capital in the coming weeks. David plays what may be his final game for LA Galaxy today – the MLS Cup final.
Liverpool are the latest club to take an interest in signing Blackburn’s captain Christopher Samba.
The People report that Samba, who was heavily linked with Arsenal and Tottenham in the summer, is now more likely to head to Anfield than London.
Blackburn, in turn, will look to bolster their defence with a January loan deal for Hoffenheim right-back Daniel Williams.
Manchester United veteran Rio Ferdinand will not be entering into any contract discussions with the club until the summer at least, report the Sunday Mirror. His current deal runs until 2013, by which time he will be 34.
Southgate did not convince during his time in charge of Middlesbrough, but has reportedly made such a favourable impression with the FA in his role as head of elite development that it could see him become part of the discussions when it comes to picking a replacement for Fabio Capello.