Carroll praying for green light

The Magpies ace received his maiden call-up to the senior squad

over the weekend ahead of England’s friendly with France. However,

Carroll is a doubt after picking up a groin problem in the Magpies’

0-0 draw with Fulham in the Premier League on Saturday. Carroll has

linked up with the Three Lions camp at their training base in

Watford and he is hoping that he will be fit enough to play at

Wembley on Wednesday. “I just felt a twinge in the groin as we were

pushing forward to try and get a goal but I don’t really know how

it happened,” Carroll told The Sun. “I saw the doctor after the

match and it was decided to have another look at it on Sunday

lunchtime. “I hoped that if I got a good night’s sleep I might wake

up and it would feel better because that’s happened before. “It

felt worse when I got up but improved during the day.” Carroll

admits he was overjoyed to receive his first call from Fabio

Capello, saying: “There had been a lot of hints that I would get in

the England squad and when I got told officially on Saturday night

it was the best feeling in the world. “But then the prospect of

having to pull out felt like the worst feeling in the world.”

Carroll has been hampered by many off-the-field issues in recent

months which some suggested would prevent him being called into the

England squad. Capello has even stressed his willingness to sit

down with Carroll once he links up with the squad. “There’s been a

lot said about me off the pitch and I want to change that round,”

he said. “I want people to be talking about what I do on the pitch.

“I think I deserved the call-up. I’ve been doing well this season

and I’ve got seven goals in the league. “Plenty of opposition

players and managers have said good things about how I play. “If I

keep my good form going I hope the England manager will be picking

me again. I really believe I can score goals for England and I want

the chance to prove it. “Last season when I got 19 goals as we won

promotion back to the Premier League, people were saying I could

only do it in the Championship and that they’d find out what I was

about when I was playing regularly in the Premier League. “Well I

think I’ve shown I can do it in the top division and I’m convinced

I can do it as an international as well. “I’m not afraid of playing

for England, I see it as a great challenge and if I miss out this

time it will just make me more determined to get in the squad the

next time.”