If you’d have told a Newcastle fan they’ll end the summer with Steve Bruce signing Andy Carroll, they’d have thought you were mad.

But here we are. Deadline day has passed, with the parting image being Bruce shaking the hand of our new striker, the returning Carroll.

(Photo by Serena Taylor/Newcastle United via Getty Images)

On the face of it, we’ve signed an injury prone 30-year-old who hasn’t hit double figures in the Premier League since he first left the Magpies in January 2011.

But deep down, it’s hard not to smile at the sight of Carroll donning the Newcastle shirt once again.

He was on the brink of hero status when he left St James’ Park. As a youngster, his goals helped propel a broken Newcastle United back to the Premier League, and in the summer of 2010 he was rewarded with the number nine shirt.

(Photo by Ian Horrocks/Newcastle United via Getty Images)

It was a number he did proud, scoring 11 Premier League goals in 19 games. Sadly, this attracted interest from Liverpool, who spent £35 million on him to replace the Chelsea-bound Fernando Torres.

 

Eight-and-a-half years later, via West Ham, Carroll is back.

His reputation has dropped dramatically in years gone by. Rather than a lethal target man, he’s known as a sick note.

There’s no guarantee he’s over his injury woes. That’s why he’s only signed a one-year deal on reduced terms.

(Photo by Serena Taylor/Newcastle United via Getty Images)

But if he does prove his fitness, and he does re-find his form, there’ll be no greater sight than seeing him power home a header in front of the Gallowgate.

And that’s why it’s exciting to have Carroll back. He’s on of our own. He brings a sense of nostalgia from a time where he was a local hero. Can he be that hero once again? Who knows, but it’s nice to dream.

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