Will Andy Carroll shine for England at World Cup 2018?
It is three years away, and England are running at only a 20/1 quote to win the 2018 World Cup, but the sooner fans look forward and forget the nightmare effort of 2014 in Brazil, the better. The 2018 World Cup, hosted by Russia, will see England once again try and live up to some hype and make an impact at the greatest football tournament in the world.
England managed to net just the two goals at Brazil 2014, Daniel Sturridge’s effort against Italy and Wayne Rooney’s conversion against Uruguay, both games of course ending in defeat for the Three Lions. One assumes that Roy Hodgson will be in charge of the England squad again come the next World Cup, but what kind of strike force will he be taking?
Wayne Rooney will probably be a cert, and Daniel Sturridge too if he is fit and healthy, and maybe Danny Welbeck, who seems to be a favourite of Hodgson, but hasn’t been prolific after his move to Arsenal from Manchester United.
There are some good youngsters on the scene who could come good, like Saido Berahino and Tottenham’s man of the moment Harry Kane, but will Hodgson see the value in 26 year old West Ham line-leader Andy Carroll?
Injuries have plagued the career of Carroll, but he has won himself nine previous England caps, and returned two goals from those games. He does have big tournament experience, as he was called upon for Euro 2012 where he scored a goal against Sweden on his fifth appearance in a full England shirt.
With the big man back fit and hammering away at defences with West Ham in the Premier League this season, he looks as if he is taking on a new lease of life and enjoying the game to the fullest. Pundits have been impressed by Carrol this season, not only his work rate and physical prowess in the air, but his sublime feet as well, highlighted by a stunning goal against Swansea in early January.
Carroll could be the solution that England need. A bit of that old Alan Shearer type grit and determination to get under the skin of defences. Someone who isn’t afraid to put himself about and someone who can epitomise what it means to wear the Three Lions on his chest.
He may not be the fanciest footballer in the work, but the work horse provides a superb alternative option for England to call upon. There’s a lot of work for him to do in the next three years to get himself a call up, and he needs to find more goals. But with his bright start to 2015, he could finally be playing his way into an England role at World Cup 2018.