Of all the improbable stories from the winter transfer window, that of Liverpool’s Andy Carroll and Manchester City’s Carlos Tevez trading places has to top the lot.
Recently, questions have been asked of the transfer acumen of Kenny Dalglish. Stewart Downing has disappointed, Jordan Henderson has hibernated and Charlie Adam has amazed all too infrequently. But the elephant in the room, the seemingly huge clanger that has been made by the Liverpool chief was the purchase, for £35 million, of the half season wonder Andy Carroll.
It would be cruel to completely write Carroll off at this stage. He may well go on to have a good career at Liverpool or elsewhere. He showed real commitment against Manchester Untied at the weekend and, if he could find top fitness and form, he has the right build for a quality target man in the Premier League. Indeed, he has already showed what he can do, albeit briefly, for Newcastle United.
But why, by Jupiter’s family jewels, would Manchester City want him? They have an immeasurably better version of him sitting on the bench in Edin Dzeko. In fact, many Manchester City fans could argue that they would prefer a non-playing Carlos Tevez to an Andy Carroll who, on current form, is only going to get in the way of Manchester City’s ambitions.
Kenny Dalglish can hide behind the fact that whilst Liverpool probably squandered £35m on Carroll, Chelsea spent an even greater amount on the continually misfiring Fernando Torres. But, if you were to do a poll, surely most would plump for the Spaniard. Unfortunately for King Kenny, he will probably find that other managers aren’t prepared to make the same kind of mistake that he did last January. And sadly for Andy Carroll, this latest story will only worsen his mood and predicament.
So what would you do with Andy Carroll?