Hughton salutes clinical Carroll

The 21-year-old, watched by one of his predecessors as the Magpies’
number nine, Alan Shearer, and England boss Fabio Capello’s
representatives, made the major contribution to a 6-0 demolition of
Villa on a remarkable afternoon at St James’ Park. Carroll scored
three goals during as series of cameo appearances during the club’s
ill-fated relegation season, but announced his arrival in the big
time in style as Villa felt the full force of his blossoming
potential. Hughton said: “What he has done is work hard to develop
his game, but we all know and certainly centre-forwards will know
it is about scoring goals. “He was able to do that last season – it
was something we asked of him, could he add goals to his game, and
in the lesser division, he was able to do that. “Now the challenge
for him is to do it in this division. “There are areas of his game
he can improve. How far he can go, that will be up to the
environment he is in and the individual himself, but he has the
attributes to improve even more. “For those who have been in the
game for quite some time, he is very much a throw-back. He can be
prolific in the air – he is certainly a handful for most defenders
he plays against. “But as all good and great goalscorers will tell
you, it’s not only about a contribution for the team, but they
would see it more so as putting the ball in the back of the net and
ultimately, he will be judged on that.” Newcastle’s romp grew from
unpromising beginnings with Villa passing up the chance to take the
lead within 10 minutes when John Carew skied a penalty high over
Steve Harper’s crossbar, and the home side took full advantage.
Joey Barton started the ball rolling with a 12th-minute piledriver,
and the home fans among a crowd of 43,546 were celebrating again 12
minutes before the break when Kevin Nolan made it 2-0. Carroll
opened his season’s account with a 34th-minute snapshot and then
made it 4-0 with 67 minutes gone before completing his hat-trick in
injury time following Nolan’s second of the day. A delighted
Hughton, however, insisted no-one would be carried away by a result
which raised eyebrows even on Tyneside. He said: “It’s a good day
for us, a really good day for us, but in the Premier League, we are
realistic enough to know that it doesn’t happen that often. “These
scorelines are normally reserved for your top six teams, so they
don’t come around too often. “We have to enjoy it while it’s there,
but my job and my responsibility will be to bring everybody’s feet
firmly back on to the ground.” If it was a good day for the
Magpies, it was a dreadful one for Villa and caretaker-boss Kevin
MacDonald, whose hopes of winning the job on a permanent basis were
done no favours as United States coach Bob Bradley expressed his
interest. MacDonald said: “I don’t think it changes my views at the
moment, and my views are that maybe by the end of next week when we
have finished all those games, I will be able to sit down and think
is it what I want to do or is it not what I want to do? “We have
got a big game coming up on Thursday which we have got to get back
up for to try to get into the Europa League. “One or two of the
young lads who have played three games in a week, maybe it was too
much for them, so I will accept responsibility. It was me who chose
the team.”