Date: 18th May 2019 at 7:15am
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Former England international Darren Bent has lifted the lid on his concerns regarding West Ham United striker Andy Carroll.

The Sun reported on Thursday that the Hammers were considering offering the injury-prone hitman a new contract, with his current deal set to expire at the end of June.

Bent isn’t convinced by the wisdom of that: “He can only play one type of way, because he’s obviously a big man, target man – really good in the air, one of the best I’ve seen, headers of the ball,” he told talkSPORT. “But you have to get early crosses in, you have to hit him directly, let him knock it down, like a real target man.

“So he is very, very good, but at a side like West Ham does he suit the way they play, because they’re not really a side that likes to whip crosses in. Obviously they like to play with their playmakers: Felipe Anderson; [Manuel] Lanzini when he’s fit; [Michail] Antonio down the line, powerful; [Marko] Arnautovic. So for West Ham, he might not be the right fit.

OPINION

It’s hard to argue with Bent having watched West Ham with and without Carroll in the team this season. They simply look a lot better side without him. The former Liverpool man is the type of player you have to tailor your team around, whereas Hammers boss Manuel Pellegrini has his own system and style of play that he wants to implement. That goes out the window when Carroll is playing, because he becomes useless unless you hammer crosses into him early. With that said, Bent’s right, he doesn’t really suit West Ham’s style of play. He’s a throwback striker, he’s not the most technically gifted. That doesn’t really jive with what Pellegrini is trying to do at the London Stadium. He wants to play quick, two-touch football with the likes of Anderson, Lanzini and Arnautovic involved throughout. Carroll merely slows that process down. Pellegrini will know that and it’s likely why the Englishman is seemingly heading out the door this summer.