Hughton warns Carroll to stay grounded
Newcastle boss Chris Hughton has warned man of the moment Andy Carroll that life in the Premier League will not always be as rewarding as it was on Sunday.
Hughton praises Carroll.
The 21-year-old marked his first top-flight game at St James' Park as the Magpies' No.9 with a fine hat-trick in a 6-0 hammering of Aston Villa, catapulting himself into the headlines and sparking early cries for an England call-up.
But while Hughton was delighted with his performance and the development he has shown since forcing his way into the first-team picture, he knows from experience that there will inevitably be good times as well as bad for the Geordie starlet.
He said: "What he has realised and does realise is that days like the day he had on Sunday, he will have equally as many bad days. It comes with the territory as a centre-forward. There will be good spells and bad spells and it's working through those spells. Particularly when he is in the form he is in, we have got to capitalise on it the best way we can. But he will have bad days as well and that is something he is fully aware of.''
Carroll, who was watched on Sunday by Fabio Capello's right-hand man Franco Baldini, had been touted for a call-up to the senior squad, although his club manager knows that will only come as a result of sustained performance at club level.
Hughton said: "Where he is at this particular moment as regards to England, that, of course, is for others to make that decision. The most important thing for us is that he is performing for Newcastle United, and he certainly couldn't have started the season any better than he has.''
Carroll's influence to date this season may persuade Hughton to rest him for Wednesday night's Carling Cup second-round trip to Accrington Stanley ahead of Saturday's league visit to Wolves. The manager will use the depth of his squad, and is making no bones about where his priorities for the season lie.
He said: "For us, we have to approach the game and give it the respect it deserves, but we have also got to be mindful of where we are as a squad at this particular moment. It is also an opportunity to play a lot of the players who have been on the fringes. This league is such a tough and demanding league and whereas perhaps last season, some young players who were on the fringes were able to get some games or were able to be on the bench, it will be tougher for them this season. We have to look for those opportunities as well and this competition fits very well into that.''