The Magpies frontman missed out on Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Wolverhampton Wanderers due to injury, and Sky Sports pundit Mills believes that Carroll’s injury problems always presented an issue.
“This was always going to be the doubt signing Andy Carroll, we all assumed he would be on a pay-as-you-play contract, I don’t think anyone would be too doubtful about that,” he told Football Insider.
“When you need to get fit, when you need a player – at that sort of level he’s going to struggle to play 90 minutes, he’s going to struggle to play 45 minutes if he can’t get through more than two training sessions. It looks like a little bit of a gamble that isn’t really paying off at the moment.”
How much of a gamble was signing Carroll when he’s on a pay-as-you-play contract? If he’s not playing, which he didn’t do on Sunday, then he’s not going to be costing the club any money. So what gamble is Mills referring to exactly? Yes, it’s frustrating for fans to see him pick up another injury, and no doubt it’s hugely irritating for Carroll himself. But him not being able to get through more than two training sessions a week isn’t something that’s necessarily going to last forever. As he gets back to playing more regularly and, as long as he somehow manages to remain fit, then he will begin to train more than just twice a week. That seems fairly obvious. Mills, though, is clearly hugely keen to go against the Carroll signing. The England international has had 15 injuries in the last eight years [Source: Transfermarkt], and so it’s always a risk to sign someone with that sort of history. However, when the player is on a pay-as-you-play deal it’s really not that big of an issue. Not to anyone not named Danny Mills, anyway.