By Rob Stewart
Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish has been backed to bring the best out of England striker Andy Carroll by Newcastle United goal-scoring legend Alan Shearer.
Dalglish has already leapt to the defence of his £35 million striker after his lifestyle was criticised by England head coach Fabio Capello and Shearer has insisted that his fellow Geordie is in good hands with the Anfield boss.
Shearer, who played under Dalglish in the title-winning Blackburn Rovers side in the mid-90s and managed Carroll for a brief spell as Newcastle United boss, believes his former player is in the best possible hands on Merseyside.
“If there is one guy that will get the best out of Andy Carroll it will be Kenny Dalglish and I know that from my own personal experience when I worked under him at Blackburn,” Shearer told Goal.com.
“Whether you are scoring goals for fun or whether you are having a tough time in front of goal Kenny will not change. Kenny will be able to pass on all the experience and know-how that he has gained as a player and as a manager. He will be a great help to Andy.”
Shearer – who will play for Kevin Keegan's Entertainers against Roy Evans' Liverpool old boys at Kingston Park, Newcastle on Sunday, October 9 in a charity game – is confident the 22-year-old Carroll will overcome a sluggish start to the season to win over Liverpool fans.
The former England and Newcastle skipper, who was idolised by Carroll as he came through the ranks at St James’ Park, backed the 6ft 3in targetman to come good amid veiled criticism from Capello.
The Italian said the centre forward had to “be careful” off the field and had to “drink less” than other footballers and called into question his attitude to training while with England.
“Andy is at a great football club and he is working under a great manager in Kenny Dalglish,” Shearer added. “He hasn’t had the best of starts to this season for whatever reason but ability-wise he will never lose what he has got and I sure he will come good again.
“I used to sit and listen to guys give me advice, particularly through the media, so I would hate for him to think that I would be sat here publicly giving him advice so I won’t start now.
“But what I can say is that confidence in football is the biggest thing and once he gets up and running then he will be fine. I have no doubt about that.
“First he must fight to regain his first-team place and then start playing on a regular basis to get back his sharpness and match fitness and it is then that Liverpool will see the best of him.”
Meanwhile, 'Match of the Day' pundit Shearer has admitted that he is still keen to return to management despite turning down the chance to take the helm at Championship side Cardiff City.
“The situation is exactly the same as it has been for the past few years in that if I believe and a club believes that it is right then that does interest me,” Shearer said.
More details on the Newcastle-Liverpool charity football match are available at www.theentertainersreunited.co.uk.
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