Andy Carroll has been talking about fitness.
Not very often you can put the two things in the same sentence.
At times last season, Steve Bruce claimed he had never seen Andy Carroll looking so fit.
However, the 31 year has now revealed that at no stage last season was he ever close to full fitness.
That is all changing though, according to Carroll.
The striker says that this is his first proper pre-season for seven or eight years and he is feeling the benefits of it, saying ‘now it’s a good platform.’
Despite never being fully fit last season, Steve Bruce gave Andy Carroll four Premier League starts. However, a lack of mobility meant that Bruce’s ultra negative tactics usually left him totally isolated.
Getting fit enough to start matches would be a massive leap forward and Newcastle fans will hope that this can be possible, although seeing will be believing after the Geordie forward kept breaking down with injury in his first season back at St James Park.
Then the next milestone would be scoring a goal in the Premier League, when the new season kicks off it will be over 29 months since the last Andy Carroll PL goal.
Newcastle desperately need goals from somewhere and with all the indications being that little or no money will be made available to buy players this summer, we will need members of the current squad to step up. A miserable 38 goals last season, with 1997/98 being the last time Newcastle scored less in a league season.
Andy Carroll speaking to NUFC TV:
“It’s been brilliant [at the pre-season training camp near York], good facilities and it’s nice to just be not too far from home.
“Not the travelling and not the tiredness when you get there, it’s an hour and a half down the road.
“I feel great, we have had three weeks off, kept fit over the summer. Well, over the break, wouldn’t call it much of a summer.
“I have worked hard and kept myself fit, it’s my first pre-season really, and I’m just looking forward to getting started.
“It’s been good, even with the lockdown, it was kind of like a pre-season for myself.
“I worked hard over that to get my fitness up and when I came back, I felt strong .
“So to have another little break and to be in with the lads every day, having a pre-season, it’s massive for me.
“I haven’t had a full one for seven or eight years now, so it’s great that even with the lockdown, getting my fitness up there and then carrying it on until the end of the season and now it’s a good platform.
“I was never really fully fit [last season], I was never fully 100% last season.
“That is because I’m always playing catch up because I never had the pre-season or the works.
“Like I say, the lockdown, this little three weeks off and now the three or four weeks leading into the first game, it’s massive and I’m feeling better every day.
“The bonding’s great and it’s a great pre-season.
“Delighted [to see Matty Longstaff sign], I’ve been in his ear from the beginning to try and get him to sign, he’s a great players, brilliant to see him back with the lads and the deal done.”