Hughton happy with Carroll condition

18 November 2010 04:00
Newcastle boss Chris Hughton was a relieved man after striker Andy Carroll returned from his England debut in one piece. Carroll played 72 minutes of last night's 2-1 friendly defeat by France at Wembley as his much-discussed elevation to the senior ranks became a reality, but only after an 11th-hour drama. The Magpies voiced their concerns over the groin injury with which the 21-year-old reported to the Football Association, although insist they never demanded that the player was withdrawn. In the event, Carroll made his debut and returned to Tyneside stiff, but otherwise unscathed, unlike Liverpool skipper Steven Gerrard, whose misfortune has added fresh fuel to the club v country debate. Asked if he had sympathy for the Reds, Hughton said: "There is always frustration when a player comes away from an international game with an injury, and that's always in the back of your mind whenever a player goes, certainly as valuable a player as Steven Gerrard is to Liverpool. "We were in that situation this week and fortunately for us, Andy has come through unscathed and at this moment, very much looks like he will be available for Saturday -but yes, I do have sympathy."

Source: PA