Speaking on Amazon Prime (December 5th, 19.00), he said: “He [Carroll] will be chuffed to bits.
“He’s come back to Newcastle, his hometown, he’s been waiting for this opportunity. It couldn’t come at a better time for him.
“What you do know is if you get the ball into the box, Andy Carroll will cause problems.”
Ferdinand is spot on – Carroll will have been delighted to get his nod against Sheffield United on Thursday evening. The big Geordie hitman has had to be patient during his second spell on Tyneside, and he had a fairly mixed bag when he was finally given his chance. Granted, he worked hard for the team, and it was his cute flick that allowed Jonjo Shelvey to run through unchallenged and slot away the second in a bizarre goal heavily indebted to a VAR intervention. But that aside, there was little in the way of quality from Carroll, and he failed to really show any of the destructive tendencies that make him such a threat when he is on song. Perhaps that was a result of limited service, but certainly, Steve Bruce will have been hoping for more from his talismanic striker. The one saving grace for Carroll, aside from assist, could be how poorly Joelinton played when he replaced him. With a big game looming against Southampton on Sunday, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Bruce name an unchanged lineup.