Belfast Telegraph

Friday 18 April 2014

Carroll: I've enjoyed Hammers stay

Andy Carroll has impressed on loan at West Ham this season

Andy Carroll has enjoyed his time at West Ham and insists he will always work hard for whichever team he is playing for.

The 24-year-old is approaching the end of his season-long loan at Upton Park from Liverpool and, despite a couple of injury setbacks earlier in the campaign, the England international has impressed during his time in east London.

It remains to be seen if Carroll will pen a permanent deal with the Hammers, with financial constraints and a yearning from the player to prove himself at Anfield likely stumbling blocks. But the ex-Newcastle striker admits he has had a great season, telling West Ham TV: "Coming down here to London, it's a long way from home but I've enjoyed every minute of it."

He added: "I knew a few of the lads down here already and all the others have welcomed me into the squad, so it's been great. It doesn't really matter what happens, I will work hard for the team I am playing for. This season has been great for me.

"When I'm fit, I try my hardest and I run about and put myself about and I feel that's what I'm about - if I didn't have that then I would have lost half of my game."

Carroll currently tops the West Ham goalscoring charts this season along with captain Kevin Nolan, with both men finding the net on seven occasions so far.

His performance in the 2-2 draw at home to Manchester United earned him the sorts of plaudits that saw Liverpool spend £35million to acquire his services from Newcastle in January 2011.

Carroll, who has a chequered history off the field, said he has enjoyed the time spent with the West Ham squad and has been pleased with his own contributions since recovering from his early-season injury problems.

"I think I have done well since I came back to fitness in February, not just with the goals that I've scored but I've also created quite a bit as well," he added. "I've put myself about as much as I can and that's really what I'm about. As long as I'm in and around the box, I can do things.

"There is a lot of talk about me from people who don't know me, who say things about me but have never met me. People have heard stories and I came here and maybe a lot of the lads thought that as well, but I feel now that most, if not all, of them are close friends. I spend every day with them and it's been great."