Manager hails Carroll capture

Sam Allardyce could hardly contain his excitement as he spoke about West Ham United's capture of Andy Carroll on a season-long loan.

Speaking exclusively to West Ham TV, Big Sam was delighted to have secured the signing of the England striker from Liverpool, with the prospect of turning the deal into a permanent move next summer.

The manager revealed that Carroll's arrival had come at the end of months of hard work by the Board, himself and his staff.

Praising Carroll's ability as an 'all-round footballer', Big Sam is now preparing for the prospect of handing the forward his West Ham debut in Saturday's Barclays Premier League visit of Fulham to the Boleyn Ground.

Sam, can you start by telling us your reaction to the signing of Andy Carroll?

SA - "The move has come about after some long, arduous negotiations with Liverpool and in the end, I think, the fact Andy Carroll needs to play regular, first-team football is a bonus for us because we can give him what he wants.

"Like everyone else I can't guarantee it - that's up to Andy - but I can say he will get the opportunity. He can keep his momentum going in terms of his career because he needs Premier League football. We can give him that not just for the sake of himself but for the sake of his England position because if he wasn't going to get many games his England position would be in jeopardy.

"I think for all parties this is a great signing."

You have worked with Andy before at Newcastle United and have also managed against him, so what are his attributes as a footballer?

SA - "Well, probably the opposite to what many people think. He is an all-round footballer. Because he is 6'4 and because one of his strengths is his aerial domination power, everybody dismisses the ability Andy possesses on the floor. His great ability has bought many goals with his left foot - he has a thunderous left foot and everyone can see it simply by going on YouTube.

"We have got a great deal on both sides. We have a very good footballer who is 6'4 and a player who scores goals. Hopefully he can score goals for us and we will be in a very good position at the end of the year in the Barclays Premier League.

"We hope to see goals from Andy of all types and another key signing for us is Matt Jarvis. They will suit each other and it is a very exciting partnership that will gel and provide a lot of opportunities for Andy and our other strikers to score goals."

Kevin Nolan and Andy Carroll

Andy Carroll played alongside Kevin Nolan at Newcastle United

You have spoken before about the importance of helping new players to settle in the area and at the club. Andy will be moving to the south for the first time, so how important is it that he knows yourself and captain Kevin Nolan from your time at Newcastle United?

SA - "I think it is important because he is going to see familiar faces. I think that the other very, very familiar face is Tim De'Ath, who is the England chef and very close to Andy when he is on international duty. Tim is also our player liaison officer and he has got a great relationship with Andy through the England set-up. Kevin, of course, is a good friend from his time in Newcastle.

"I had a short period of time with him when he was really starting to blossom as a footballer and a few other lads here will also know him. It is about him coming and saying to himself 'I am now going to go out and enjoy my football' and hopefully we can see him flourish further at West Ham United."

In the space of a week, West Ham United have broken the club record to sign Matt Jarvis and now brought in the most-expensive English footballer in history. That is some statement of intent from yourself and the Board, isn't it?

SA - "Yes. It is about quality and I think in my lifetime as a manager it has always been about being in the Premier League and signing quality and knowing where you can find that quality. The big problem is can you afford it? The Joint-Chairmen have extended themselves and I really appreciate that, as does everybody else at West Ham United.

"The opportunity to sign Andy began as a small dream at first, but it is a dream that has been realised because of the club's persistence. It will be one of the biggest shocks around the end of this transfer window because we have clinched the signing of a £35million player. For us all, it adds to the quality and strength in depth of a squad that is trying to find its feet in the Premier League and trying to achieve as much as we possibly can."

The final question I am sure every Hammers supporter would love to know the answer to is - will he make his debut against Fulham on Saturday?

SA - "I think he will be fit and available to play this weekend. I don't see any problems. He has had a full pre-season and played in the European Championship with England, so there was never a long period of time when Andy had a lot off time off. He has had a couple of games here and there and he has kept his fitness up.

"We hope in the beginning that, if he plays Saturday, the excitement and euphoria will be there for all to see. We hope he settles fast and helps us try to win the game. We then have two weeks when he will go away with England and will hopefully play another game with Roy Hodgson and then thankfully when we get back the window will be closed.

"The focus will then only be on the players who are at West Ham United. The frenzy won't start again until December and hopefully, by that time, we will be looking to add more quality because we are doing well in the Premier League."