With Newcastle all but completely out of the picture--and dealing with even bigger problems now that they've brought back Joe Kinnear--the transfer picture surrounding Andy Carroll has become clear, and it's looking like one-way traffic to London is all but settled. Yesterday Elizabeth clued us in that a decision was expected in the coming days, and that assessment looks accurate with today's revelation that the striker is back from holiday and scheduled for a medical with West Ham tomorrow.
There likely aren't any concerns about his long-term fitness despite a spell on the sidelines earlier in the season; he finished the season on top form and looked injury-free, and while his zest for life is well-documented, I don't know that there should be any added worry about whether or not the medical will hold the deal up. Also unclear how, if at all, the fact that he's spent the last season with the club and its medical staff expedites the process.
Regardless, the final countdown is on for Andy Carroll's permanent move away from Anfield, and hopefully his career can start anew (at the ripe old age of 24) in a setting where he's not dogged by having his transfer fee constantly waved in his face as though it's some meaningful indicator of what he can accomplish as a footballer.
On the Liverpool end of things it will be interesting to see how this move influences their activity in terms of bringing players in, as there's reportedly two or three--Tiago Ilori, Luis Alberto, and Simon Mignolet among them--that are very close to striking deals to move to Merseyside. The club's intention to get deals done early in the summer continues, and even though the fates aren't yet sealed for a handful of players headed in both directions, wrapping up a big bit of business on the way out is a step in the right direction.
Read More: Carroll Decision to Happen This Week