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Carroll still crocked, Sakho still unavailable

Filed: Thursday, 13th October 2016
By: Staff Writer

Andy Carroll is still nowhere near returning to first team action - nearly two months after it was reported he would be sidelined for 'four to six weeks'.

The perma-crocked former England international sustained his latest injury back in August during the away leg of West Ham United' Europa League qualifier against Astra Giurgiu.

At the time, club doc Stijn Vandenbroucke - writing in his weekly column for whufc.com on 23 August - suggested that Carroll would "be out for 4-6 weeks". Rather more telling however was Vandenbroucke's suggestion that "one should not underestimate the mental challenge that comes with a physical injury".

And nearly eight weeks later Vandenbroucke has revealed that the 27-year-old striker still has "had a few bridges to cross" before he can be considered fit enough to be considered for selection once again.

"Andy Carroll is continuing his rehab following the knee injury he suffered in the UEFA Europa League tie in Romania in August," wrote Vandenbroucke. "He is working as hard as he can on the pitch and in the gym, making progress.

"Andy has a few bridges to cross before he can join in first team training."

In other injury news, Carroll's fellow striker Diafra Sakho is also nowhere near making a first team return despite having been undergoing his own unique pre-season programme since the beginning of the season.

And club-record signing Andre Ayew, who has played less than 45 minutes for the Hammers since moving from Swansea in a 20million switch is also expected to be out of action for at least another month.

"Diafra Sakho is undertaking his own pre-season, working very hard on his fitness levels with a view to join the squad on the pitch," confirmed Vandenbroucke. "Andre is continuing his rehab and is entering the stage, a mini pre-season, where he needs to get significant fitness work under his belt in order to cope with the demands of the Premier League."

There was further bad news with confirmation that loan signing Gokhan Tore has been ruled out for between "four and six weeks", after suffering a quadricep injury during the recent international break. Meanwhile Sam Byram has undergone an operation after sustaining "a significant hamstring injury" during the 1-1 draw with Middlesbrough.

Finally Arthur Masuaku - who is also a month or so away from returning to first team training - is said to be "progressing well" and will have his knee brace removed early next week.

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