Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish backs striker Andy Carroll

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Dalglish annoyed by media criticism of Carroll

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish insists striker Andy Carroll is not struggling for confidence.

The club's record signing has scored three goals in 19 appearances this season and only five in 28 since his £35m move to Anfield.

"I don't think self-belief is a problem for Andy Carroll, I don't see why it should be," Dalglish said.

Carroll, 22, could make his second consecutive start for Liverpool against his old club Newcastle on Friday.

He made his first start in four matches in Boxing Day's 1-1 draw with Blackburn and could have scored had it not been for two good saves by Rovers goalkeeper Mark Bunn.

Dalglish said: "There is nothing to say he is short of belief and there is no evidence he should be.

"One game he played in we went down to nine men [the 4-0 defeat by Tottenham] and another [the loss at Fulham] we had another sent off.

"I think yourselves [the media] have a bigger problem with Andy than anyone else.

"This week is understandable because it is against Newcastle but I don't understand the rest of the stuff."

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew, who reluctantly sold Carroll, has backed him to regain his form and add to his three England caps.

"He hasn't really had a run in that Liverpool side and like all strikers, he probably needs a run," Pardew said.

"He's a great lad and a great player. I like Andy.

"It was disappointing to see him left out of the England squad the last time because I think he can be an England player and England's number nine.

"He is going through a period of transition at a new club, finding his feet and finding out that they play slightly differently to how we did here, but he will find his way."

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