- Euro 2012
Carroll ready to fire for England
Andy Carroll has insisted he will be firing on all cylinders when England begin their European Championship campaign next month.
Carroll has had to contend with huge expectation since joining Liverpool from Newcastle in 2011 and it was only towards the end of the season just gone that he began to prove his worth.
The forward, who has been backed by England boss Roy Hodgson to be his target man in attack, claims the run of games with Liverpool in recent weeks has put an edge on him physically and it will be to the national side's benefit.
"Now I've got a chance to show what I'm about," Carroll said. "The fee didn't bother me, I always believed in myself. But things weren't going for me and I didn't play as many games as I hoped for Liverpool. But finally I did get a run in the side towards the end of the season. I did well, got my confidence up and now I'm here.
"I feel fitter now than I did at the beginning of the season or even halfway through the season. I just needed that run of games.
"Now, I'm feeling good and fresh. At the end of the season I felt like I was moving a lot better and getting involved in games more than I did at the beginning - and it feels great."
Ashley Young, who grabbed the winning goal against Norway, partnered Carroll in attack and he liked what he saw in the strapping 23-year-old.
"Andy is a strong player, a fantastic player to have in the team," Young said. "You saw in the first five minutes that he can get his head on to something. He will get in the box and score goals.
"I think the goal came from a one-two. It's something we had been working on during the week and it paid off during the game."