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Just over an hour into his West Ham debut on loan from Liverpool, Andy Carroll collapsed—injured—clutching his hamstring.
He will be out for up to six weeks initially, but as any Reds fan will tell you, six weeks out of action for Carroll can quite easily develop into eight or 10 as he tries to regain fitness and sharpness.
His body shape and tone appears to need several matches and weeks of training to get him looking ready to play regularly again, and in the meantime, he can be somewhat ineffective on and off the ball.
For Sam Allardyce and his tactics, this should be largely negated by needing Carroll to only stand still so that his other players can find him with 30- or 40-yard passes to his head, but his all-round contribution will certainly not figure high on anybody's "highlights of the week" reel.
Should Carroll suffer further injury problems, or take as long to recover fully from them at West Ham as he initially did at Liverpool, then the Reds could find that come the end of the season, the Hammers no longer require his services—or, like Juventus and AC Milan with Alberto Aquilani, want to sign him permanently on vastly reduced terms.
Liverpool are already going to take a hit on Carroll when they sell him, they certainly can't afford for that value to drop much lower.