Carroll - 'It's great to be back'

Andy Carroll is looking forward to playing a fuller role with the Hammers after stepping up his comeback over the international break.

The No9 featured in a behind closed doors match against Fulham over that period, after making his competitive return in the closing stages of the 0-0 draw with Aston Villa on 8 November.

With a trip to Everton now on the horizon, Carroll is determined to keep his forward momentum going.

"It's great to be back," he explained. "It's been a while being out and I'm just getting my fitness back up. Getting 90 minutes against Fulham was great and obviously getting my first appearance for a while against Villa the previous weekend was even better.

"I thought we were really unlucky [to only get a point against Villa], it was a great save from the keeper, but I put myself about in the last three minutes and got a couple on target, which possibly could have gone in.

"I'm feeling really good. I've worked a lot with the medical staff and they've got me fighting fit and I'm feeling great. Obviously to train for a few weeks, get on as a sub and to then play 90 minutes just proves that I'm feeling good."

Not only did Carroll play 90 minutes against Fulham, he also got on the scoresheet and he cannot wait to experience that feeling in the Barclays Premier League once more.

He added: "It's still nice to score, even though there were no fans there. It's nice to get the 90 minute run-out and get a few touches of the ball that you don't really get in training and a few kicks that the lads don't do in training either, so it's good to be back and good to get on the pitch and get a goal.

"That's what I'm hoping for - [more minutes at Everton] - Obviously we've been flying at the minute, we've been doing great and all you can do is fight for your place. That's what I'm doing in training and hopefully the gaffer puts us on for a few more minutes and let's see what happens.

"It's tough to displace anyone in the team, anyone that's been playing, not just Sakho and Valencia. We've been playing fantastic football, we've been scoring goals and creating a lot of chances with all the players in the squad. So it's going to be a fight for everyone to get back in."