Newcastle United have shocked everyone to bring Andy Carroll home.
Carroll, 30, is Newcastle born and bred and was a free agent after leaving West Ham at the end of his contract last month.
He signed a one-year contract with the Magpies on Thursday, with the former Newcastle forward eager to return to his hometown.
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“Coming back is something that only dreams are made of,” Carroll told Sky Sports News. “It’s an amazing feeling to be back. On the way up it was just butterflies in the stomach. I couldn’t believe it really. Now it’s finally happened it’s a great feeling.”
Carroll left Newcastle in 2011 for Liverpool, when he signed for a then British record transfer fee of $42.5 million, but has spent the past few seasons on the injury table at Wembley.
The England international arrived at St James’ Park on transfer Deadline Day to discuss a deal, and talks didn’t take long as new Newcastle manager Steve Bruce has bolstered his attacking options ahead of the new campaign.
If Carroll can stay fit, and that’s a big if, there’s no doubt this will be a great move for the Magpies.
After losing Salomon Rondon and Ayoze Perez over the summer, Newcastle spent over $50 million to sign Brazilian striker Joelinton from Hoffenheim.
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Carroll represents an experienced head and given his affinity for the club and the realization that injuries have wrecked the last few years of his career, he may well have signed on reduced wages or on a pay-as-you-play contract.
The return of one of the most talented players to come out of Newcastle’s academy is a feel-good story. It will stay that way if Carroll can score goals and stay fit this season.
He is perfect for a Plan B situation as the big man up front, or just generally a good fit for the way Bruce sets his teams up with a direct style of play.
Sometimes romantic moves work.