6 Jan 2012

MACCA claims: Liverpool misfit can do what Cristiano Ronaldo did...

Liverpool legend Steve McManaman has leapt to the defence of beleaguered striker Andy Carroll, arguing that the goal-shy forward can do what Real Madrid winger Cristiano Ronaldo did at Man United, which is triumph over unwarranted early criticism

Carroll has scored only 3 goals in his last 24 games for Liverpool, and he's currently in the midst of a barren spell that has lasted 10 games now. Despite this, McManaman told TalkSport that criticism of the big man is wrong:

"We need to give these players a little bit more patience. They're not instant superstars at 19 and 20.

"If you go back to the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and people like that. People were criticising him at the ages of 19 and 20, but a couple of years later it's completely the other way. They grow and turn into the best players on the planet, so I think we just need to be a bit more patient until we get the best out of Andy".

Hmmm. I'm not sure that a prodigiously talented player like Ronaldo is the best comparison here, but I guess McManaman has a point about giving players time.

Having said that, Carroll is not 19 or 20; he's 23, and he should surely be displaying on a more regular basis the rudimentary skills required of a top class footballer...?

The standard of service into Carroll has, admittedly, been poor, and Macca acknowledged that the quality of balls into the box needs to improve:

"Just because you've got a 6'4 striker who thrives on balls in the air doesn't mean you should just shove it into the box at every available opportunity. There's a right time and a wrong time to pick a pass out, and whenever anything goes into the box, it should be of the right quality.

"I think Steven gerrard demonstarted that when he came on against Newcastle; he put a few wonderful balls into the box. Hopefully, with Steven on the pitch, he will bring out the best in Andy Carroll".

For me, this is the main issue with Carroll: he's a reactive player; it's always down to everyone else to bring the best out of him. Liverpool need PROACTIVE players who can make things happen, and create chances for themselves sometimes.

As we've seen, Carroll is simply incapable of doing that, which means that Liverpool's style of play with him in the team will always be ultra-predictable.

Jaimie Kanwar


  1. Cool down Macca, you should support Suarez and the Club that groomed you into stardom. Remember  that the England FA is ROTTEN to the core. It's not not I love Macca less but I love Liverpool more.

  2. 23 Today! Happy Birthday, big fella! Now go out there and get 15 goals in what's left of the season!

  3. He's got a point. Look at Lucas.

  4.  This is true , to a certain extent, but i've heard some disturbing things about carroll and how he carries himself. really not sure he has the intelligence/application to graft and focus as he needs to.
    Downing's crosses are championship standard, adam's set pieces not much better, johnson is hardly supplying any good chances for him, so that leaves SG. The player who made Torres look so good had a lot more to work with when playing with nando, while carroll needs a certain type of ball/chance to flourish.
    if Bent is coming in, carroll will see his chances diminish and can write off the euro's this summer. He has an ever decreasing window in which to step up, this season at least.

  5. i agree with jamie about the proactive players. Carroll either needs acurate balls into him or he needs someone to share the burden up front. carroll only looks comfortable in the box when he has his ariel abilty to hand, when in a congested box and the ball is on the floor he has'nt got the agility to move quick enough into space to fire a shot off. In my mind carroll needs a goal poacher operating around him. This will allow him to operate around the edge of the box. This area I believe to be his best position as it will let him fire off with his left foot if the ball comes deep and it also enables him to attack crosses from either wing. At the moment he is operating as a lone striker and he cant operate in this position effectively, we saw the other night kompany was the stopper and sat in front of carroll when the crosses come in with toure as a back up marking carroll if kompany missed it. All night we saw kompany repell each and every cross and if one got through toure was their to put the pressure on carroll.  Due to the lack of pace from carroll it also ensures that teams can squeeze the play and play high defensive lines as they know that they are not going to be caught out by a pacey attacker.

    I believe when kenny bought carroll surez would be that goal poacher but surez likes to come from a forward postion to a depper turn and attack, he also often uses the wings to widen up play to bring in the midfield. Surez is a very good lone striker when scoring as he brings everything for liverpool as we saw at the latter part of last season, but he can also play with another forward who is an out and out striker but the striker he has to play with must have the agility and pace to keep up with him, otherwise like we have seen on many occasions with carroll and surez up front; surez leaves him for dean and is 2 moves infront of him at every occasion. If liverpool do get darren bent, then i can see a good trio of options up front where bent compliments both surez and carroll.  

  6. macca should put the crack pipe down and sober up.
    why not make a comparison with messi while he's at it?
    carroll is a poor player and his attitude is appalling on the field,he is lazy.
    i think there'd be more empathy for him if he looked like he was breaking his balls every game and thinks weren't happening but that's not the case,he just strolls around waiing for the ball and has a dreadful first touch something a 'big man' requires to hold up the play.

  7. £35 million for a piece of dead wood..... Only in the Premiership. 

  8. Reactive players:
    Lucas, Henderson, Carroll

    Proactive players:
    Gerrard, Adam, Shelvey, Spearing, Suarez, Bellamy

    Indeed, every team needs a balance of both types of players. There must be both the leaders and supporters, the creators and the follow-up crew. However, it takes time for the players to accomodate one another, especially the supporting cast. It won't be fair either to say the proactive players are indeed superior because skills and abilities are completely different issues, but the proactive players will always have a good idea of what they want happening where the reactive players will never have a clue - although once adjusted, which maybe requires more time, they can let their abilities shine. For so long, Lucas had been a donkey in midfield, playing in the shadows of Alonso, Gerrard and Mascherano, trying to mimic their games to poor effect, however, the real Lucas eventually stood up and was nothing like the 3 maestros and his own style, in support of the rest of the team, made him a key component in our side.

    Once again, in a comparison between Hendo and Shelvey, both have great game intelligence and possess great technical ability, but Shelvey will constantly try to create something out of nothing - something Henderson cannot do, but he has shown flashes of brilliance where he has attempted to take advantage of something someone else has created, like his assist for Gerrard's goal against Newcastle. Like Lucas, Henderson can only start to assert himself when he understands the team better, because his game is not centred on himself, but on the understanding of his team mates and this takes time.

    Our proactive players are ego maniacs with varying levels of capability and it was always more likely they would start performing earlier because their games are primarily about themselves and they love putting their talent on display - something we as fans do tend to gravitate towards. Carroll, like Henderson and Lucas, is one of those players who needs to feed off the team to engage his abilities, but his reading of the game and mobility aren't in their class so his suppliers have to play to his strength(pun intended). No less than 4 times during the Newcastle game, Gerrard provided the type of supply that Carroll could pounce on and he needs more of that from our other players. The best baseball bats you can buy will always be dead wood if there's no one to wield them.

    Our only new signing who truly deserves some harsh criticism is Downing as he's been performing like a robot. He appeared to be a great signing for the first couple of games because we never really had a speedy winger who could beat fullbacks and deliver a steady supply of crosses, but you'll find it's almost all he ever does, without picking out players in good positions. When Downing crosses, there are seldom players within striking distance. When Downing cuts in, he will always attempt to shoot when he could lay it off to someone better positioned. You can't fault him for endeavour, but it doesn't look like he's enjoying himself or even challenging himself. He plays a brainless game and doesn't look like part of a team, neither as a leader nor follower, just a drone with the technical ability. Mark Gonzalez and Ricardo Quaresma come to mind as equally talented but brainless footballers. I wonder what Macca has to say about him...

  9. Pastor - I agree with you that harshest criticism should be reserved for Stewart Downing, but to compare him to Ricardo Quaresma is ridiculous. He has nowhere near the same level of talent or impact on games.

    Quaresma is one of the most gifted wingers of his generation. Downing is a no trick pony.

  10. some people are just impatient. we are still in two cups and 4th isnt a million  miles away. andy carroll has every chance to redeem himself this season. one man dont make a team the old man used to say.  we need 11 players on there game, and everyones a winner 

  11. bit of an insult to the championship. seen better crosses down the local rec on a sunday morning on a crappy pot holed pitch.
    kelly needs to be played at right back with johnson in front its that obvious!! 

  12. is that why you hear nothing of quaresma anymore? wat generation?

  13. How on earth is Macca not supporting Liverpool with his comments! He is so pro-liverpool it hurts us Everton fans!