Paul Parker

Carroll is not a Liverpool player

Paul Parker

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Sunday was a humiliating experience for Andy Carroll on his return to Newcastle. Not only because of his ridiculous dive in the first half, but also thanks to the way in which he was substituted by Kenny Dalglish.

Carroll's decision to throw himself to ground after rounding Tim Krul was as embarrassing as it was inexplicable, because he had the perfect opportunity to score a goal. I know he is predominantly left footed but all he had to do was keep his balance and slot it into an empty net. It was a goal, but he decided to throw himself to the floor to try and earn a penalty which hardly endeared him to a group of supporters who used to idolise him at Newcastle, but roundly abused him on Sunday.

The dive just doesn't make any sense. It would have been a great goal for Carroll and it wasn't the kind you expect to see him score - taking a nice touch and outpacing someone - so to spurn the opportunity to beat Krul in that fashion is completely perplexing.

It was a bizarre decision but perhaps the most embarrassing thing was Dalglish coming out and saying that Carroll didn't dive. Now I am waiting to see if Kenny Dalglish will get all his players to wear t-shirts supporting the striker. Where have we seen that before?

It is a difficult time for Carroll, and he won't want to go back to Newcastle again for a long, long time as he will have to hang his head in shame amongst his fellow Geordies. To be honest, though, I'm not sure he wants to be at Liverpool. I think he would prefer to still be in Newcastle where there was no great pressure on him.

He was just a big lad up front and if he could produce 50 per cent of what Alan Shearer did then he would be okay. As a local boy he was given more of a chance there as he was not weighed down by the expectation generated by a £35 million transfer fee. He wasn't worth that kind of money at all: it was silly money to be paying. He is just not up to that level of football and he is not a Liverpool player, to be honest.

Unless Liverpool start emulating the kind of football that Wimbledon or Watford used to play then Carroll is not going to be of much use to them.

Dalglish has defended Carroll to the hilt over the past 12 months despite his unconvincing form but he has not been rewarded for it. Though he won't come out and criticise him publicly - that isn't Kenny's way - somewhere along the line he has to admit that he isn't getting enough out of Carroll and he has to sort the situation out. There has been no return on their investment on him and they need to work on a plan that will get them something from that huge outlay.

I don't know if Kenny is the man to do that. They have a proven coach there in Steve Clarke but you wonder what influence he is having as it doesn't look to me as though there is any kind of cohesion in that side. You need continuity for that, and Kenny keeps changing the team all the time.

There could be big changes at Liverpool in the summer, but if Carroll is to go then they are going to have to give him away, and they would lose a lot of money which would be very embarrassing for a club like Liverpool.

However, I will defend Carroll, at least partially, on one count. He has been accused of swearing at Dalglish following his substitution but there was nothing to me that suggested he was definitely directing his anger 100 per cent at his manager. It could have been at himself, or he could have just been railing against the world.

If it was directed at Kenny, I think he is going to learn a big, harsh lesson, and not only from the club and his manager but the fans as well, because they will not accept that. However, I think he may be innocent in this respect at least.

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