WEST HAM finally landed Andy Carroll yesterday – after seeing off Arsenal’s shock attempt to hijack the £60m deal.
Starsport can reveal the Gunners made a last-ditch move for the striker as he weighed up the Hammers’ £100,000-a-week offer. Arsenal’s enquirywas a tentative one, mainly to find out exactly how much it would cost to land the England man.
West Ham paid Liverpool £16m, which could rise to £19m with add-ons, to sign Carroll following his loan spell last season.
The striker signed an initial six-year deal.
West Ham have the option of extending his contract by another two, which would tie him to the club until 2021.
Carroll, an old-fashioned, towering target man, might not fit the mould of an Arsene Wenger signing.
But the Frenchman is a long-term admirer, dating back to Carroll’s days at Newcastle when he troubled the Gunners on more than one occasion.
The Frenchman has said previously: “He has a kind of presence. He has something special and he’s efficient.
“I have been impressed by him. He has charisma, confidence and he is intelligent on the ball.”
While Carroll will be in the money, Liverpool have had to take at least a £16m hit on the striker.
They splashed out £35m to land him from Newcastle on January deadline day in 2011.
Carroll reckons the Hammers are on the up, especially with their 2016 move to the Olympic Stadium on the horizon.
He said: “The way the club’s being run, obviously getting the new stadium and everything like that, it’s only going up.
“Getting promoted the season before last, then finishing where we did – it can only get better for us.”
Carroll took his time before saying yes to West Ham, who agreed the fee with Liverpool last month.
But he knows regular football will be key to his hopes of making England’s World Cup squad next summer, providing Roy Hodgson’s men qualify.
Carroll added: “What I wanted to do was come back here and play.
“I just want to keep fit now, keep scoring goals and performing week in and week out for West Ham. If I do that, then hopefully I will get in the England team.”