Collapse of Carroll bid scuppers West Ham swoop for Berbatov

Sam Allardyce was hopeful of landing "two or three other big names", including the Manchester United star, if he could capture the England international
By Wayne Veysey | Chief Correspondent

West Ham have abandoned their pursuit of Andy Carroll as Sam Allardyce lines up alternative transfer targets.

Allardyce is a huge admirer of the Liverpool striker but sources have told that Carroll does not want to move to the Premier League new boys and the Londoners are unable to match his current £80,000-a-week salary.

West Ham have also made enquiries to land Dimitar Berbatov from Manchester United and were hopeful they could entice the Bulgarian striker on the back of signing Carroll.

But senior Upton Park sources have privately given up hope of capturing the England international despite reports that they have agreed a loan deal with Liverpool.

"Carroll is not coming,” a West Ham source told “It is a shame because the club felt if they could get him, two or three other big names would follow, like Berbatov.”

It is understood that the situation has not altered much from last week, when West Ham increased their efforts to sign Carroll by offering to take the 23-year-old on loan for an initial fee of £2 million with £16m added on top of that to make the move permanent, provided the Hammers avoid relegation from the Premier League next season.

The public nature of West Ham's interest has surprised some observers, given that the club's current wage ceiling is £40,000-a-week and there is not expected to be a repeat of the kind of £90,000-a-week deal that brought Wayne Bridge on loan from Manchester City in 2010-11.

Brendan Rodgers has insisted there is no chance of Carroll leaving Liverpool on loan but the manager admits the Merseysiders will consider offers for the 23-year-old.

Newcastle have also made a bid for the striker, but they have only been prepared to loan the player for a season and pay £13m in a year’s time.

It is understood that the north-east club’s hierarchy are continuing to closely monitor Carroll’s situation and that they are willing to bid up to £18m to buy the forward permanently back from the club who they sold him to for £35m in January of last year.

28/1 Andy Carroll is 28/1 to be the top Premier League goalscorer in 2012-13 with Sportingbet
Carroll would prefer a return to Newcastle if he is sold by Liverpool rather than a move to east London although it is believed that he would not be opposed to a switch to a Champions League-calibre club based in the capital.

“Carroll is very much his own man,” the source added. “He will not be pushed into a move he doesn’t want to make and, as things stand, he doesn’t want to go to West Ham.”

Insiders say the deal will only be resurrected if Liverpool change their stance later in the window and offer to subsidise a large portion of the player’s wages.

The collapse of West Ham’s pursuit has scuppered Allardyce’s plans, even though the manager is on the verge of signing defender James Collins from Aston Villa.

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