When your star striker, the club record signing, has played only barely half of the games over a three season period, there’s something wrong. More than just an unlucky spell of injury, this indicates a severe, recurring problem. Andy Carroll, former England international and occasional West Ham player, is the poster boy for hamstrung talent, and his very incapacitated presence is causing West Ham – and their wage bill – tangible suffering. When does the promise of a few good games, healthily navigated, become insufficient assurance? For Outside90.com, let’s discuss.
Over the past three seasons, West Ham have played 107 league matches. Of those fixtures, Andy Carroll has been at the club, on loan and permanently, for 105 of them and has been fit and available to play in 53.