West Ham forward Carroll keeping England hopes in perspective

Barry Fry Director of Football of Peterborough United with David Sullivan and David Gold Joint Chairman of West Ham United during the Pre Season Friendly match between Peterborough

Carroll scored an impressive goal for West Ham United against Stoke City, bringing the Hammers level in the 90th minute in the key relegation contest.

Andy Carroll's late strike left Stoke 19th in the table, still five points adrift of safety with just four games remaining in their battle to beat the drop.

But West Ham showed all their fighting qualities as they rescued a point in added time when Carroll volleyed a cross from Aaron Cresswell past Jack Butland into the corner of the net.

That goal could well ensure West Ham stay up, while condemning Stoke to a season down under.

In his first game back, he made a mistake for a goal in a 3-0 loss at Burnley on March 10, and this one against Stoke was nearly an exact replica as he fumbled a shot in front of him by Xherdan Shaqiri. So it was a surprise that it spilt out.

West Ham manager David Moyes looks to Marko Arnautovic: "The players look to him".

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"For the team, for us, at the time it was hard because it meant we had to go and look to change after we had been the dominant team, apart from the first five or 10 minutes of the second half". Why wouldn't you take him?

Arnautovic thought he had opened the scoring in the 55th minute when he glanced in Cresswell's cross, but the offside flag cut short his celebrations, replays showing the decision was marginally correct. "I can't fault the effort or commitment, and we'll see what happens". Yet, West Ham's late goal ensured another disappointing result for The Potters, with one point feeling like zero - a result that surely crucifies them to the Championship.

"You always think 40 points is safe". I think the target has always got to be that. We are playing well, we have got an incredible support behind us, and I am pretty sure come Sunday, there will not be many stadiums rocking the way ours can rock on Sunday.

Moyes had nothing but praise for former Liverpool striker Carroll after he made an immediate impact as a substitute after being sidelined since January with an ankle injury.

"We were very good with some very good moments. But if he can continue to come off the bench and give us 20 or 30 minutes, that will be more than handy as he showed tonight".

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