Carroll earns Allardyce praise

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce hailed striker Andy Carroll’s
“world class” contribution to Saturday’s 3-1 win over West
Brom.

The England international, on loan from Liverpool, scored twice
in a win that helped allay lingering fears of a relegation battle
for the Hammers.

Having headed the home side in front from a first-half corner,
Carroll’s second was a sublime first-time volley having allowed the
ball to drop over his shoulder from a free-kick with 10 minutes
remaining.

In Allardyce’s opinion, the goals were just reward for an
all-round performance of the highest quality from the
24-year-old.

“His performances have equalled that, but he has not put the
ball in the back of the net as regularly as we would have liked,”
Allardyce asserted.

“Getting a brace today is fantastic for him, and today showed
what he is all about.

“He’s not just strong in the air, as people perceive is his only
strength, it’s the quality on the floor, the hold-up play and then
the technique on the volley, as we saw, was outstanding.

“It was a world-class finish, nobody can take that away from
him, it was outstanding.”

Allardyce had talked before the match of a need for five points
from the remaining nine games to secure a place in the Premier
League, a matter that is of even more importance with a move to the
Olympic Stadium pencilled in for 2016.

“With Wigan winning and closing the gap it was a very important
win for us today, it puts us back in 11th spot so we’re moving back
up the table. We’ve been hovering around there all season, so it
shows the consistency,” he added.

“There’s a new future ahead for West Ham, and it’s a focus to
build for that future. I only focus on the next game, get the club
in a position to re-plan and organise for next season. We’re not
quite there yet, but we’re looking very comfortable.”

Allardyce also confirmed that substitute George McCartney had
hobbled off late on with a recurrence of a knee injury that had
kept him out of action for four months.