Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish cannot understand the "obsession" with Andy Carroll's form as the £35million striker continues to search for his first Premier League goal of the season.
The England international is yet to score in five league appearances so far this season, although he was on target for the Reds in the Carling Cup second-round victory at Exeter.
Quoted in several national newspapers on Saturday morning, Dalglish said: "I don't understand the obsession. There are other players who haven't played either. I think people are obsessed with Andy Carroll."
He added: "He's learning, but I'm an old guy and I'm still learning. I don't understand the paranoia with Andy. People talk about him like they know him. They don't know him. They talk about his lifestyle - what lifestyle? Everybody is obsessed with Andy Carroll.
"We'll always look after him and I'm sure he'll look after us. We've spoken in the past about Andy being one for the future, not just the short term, but it's immediate for everyone.
"Some of them that aren't as fortunate as he is, their future might not be as long as Andy Carroll's."