English Premiership

Carroll ready to start after 8 months out

2015-10-02 14:46
Andy Carroll (AFP)

London - West Ham striker Andy Carroll could make his first Premier League start in more than eight months in Saturday's match at Sunderland.

The England international tore knee ligaments in February but made an appearance off the bench in a 2-2 draw against Norwich City last weekend and is expected to recover from a sore ankle to feature at the Stadium of Light.

Carroll, 26, has been ravaged by fitness problems since joining the Hammers in a club record ‎£15 million move in June 2013.

He missed five months of the 2013/14 season with a heel injury and made just 16 appearances last term after suffering both ankle and knee ligament damage.

West Ham coach Slaven Bilic on Thursday tipped Carroll to return to the England squad if the forward can avoid further injury setbacks.

"The England squad will come as a logical result if things are cured," Bilic said.

"First of all he has to stay away from injuries. Only with that can he be in a position to have a great season.

"In the past it has not been because he dropped in form it's because he was injured," added the Croat, whose side are third in the table, three points behind leaders Manchester United, after seven matches.

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