West Bromwich Albion: Joseph Masi questions club’s usage of Andy Carroll

Image for West Bromwich Albion: Joseph Masi questions club’s usage of Andy Carroll

West Bromwich Albion journalist Joseph Masi has slammed the club for how the players are using Andy Carroll following their recent Championship clash.

West Brom’s promotion hopes took a blow last night as they were held 0-0 at The Hawthorns in only Steve Bruce’s second game in charge at the club, and his first in front of the home crowd.

The result means that the Baggies are currently 8th in the table, but given the disparity of games with some of the clubs around them, their place in the top six this season is far from certain.

One of the criticisms to come from the game from Masi has been how the Baggies players aren’t getting the best out of their 6’4″ centre-forward.

Carroll signed for the club as a free agent back in January and has already started to make an impact, winning more aerial duels and recording more key passes per game than his teammates, at 11 and 1.7 respectively (via WhoScored).

And speaking on the Express and Star YouTube channel after the game, Masi slammed the Albion players for not only failing to provide Carroll with the chances to score, but also to bring other players into the game as a result of his aerial presence.

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He said: “All Albion’s problems stem from that final third. And the truth is they’re not creating enough for Andy Carroll.

“When you’ve got Andy Carroll, you’ve got to get balls into the box, you’ve got to get crosses into the box. He will win basically anything in the air, and if he doesn’t direct his header on goal, he’s going to knock it down somewhere where you’ve got to latch on to try and win second balls.

“Albion, a) aren’t getting enough crosses into the box and b) aren’t getting enough bodies around Andy Carroll to get those second balls and get those chances. So I think that’s why we’re really disappointed.”

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Scoring goals has been a problem for West Brom all season. Their total of 34 goals is the fewest of any side in the top half of the table, but with Carroll – someone whose average in aerial duels won since joining the club currently leads the league (via WhoScored) – they could be handed a lifeline that could help them in that department.

The Baggies put a total of 22 crosses in from players who were not Carroll against Blackburn Rovers (via WhoScored), which was a marked improvement on their recent game against Millwall, where they only put in 13 (via WhoScored). So the message is getting through that they need to put more in, but as Masi said, there is still a lot more that they can be doing.

Let’s just hope that they take his advice on board sooner rather than later if they are to make a decent run at promotion.

In other news: Bruce wanted him in 2017: Journalist hints West Brom could ‘bring’ player to Hawthorns

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Freelance sports journalist & broadcaster.