Carroll: Cahill my toughest opponent yet

Liverpool striker Andy Carroll has hailed Bolton Wanderers centre-half Gary Cahill as the toughest opponent he has faced so far in his career.

The imposing 22-year-old has faced no shortage of quality defenders in an impressive first season in top-flight football, one which has included a £35 million January transfer to Liverpool and a first international goal in England's recent friendly against Ghana.

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Cahill, 25, earned his third England cap in that match, and Carroll was quick to praise the Bolton defender as the most difficult challenge he has come across.

“[My toughest opponent?] Probably Gary Cahill at Bolton,” he says in the May issue of FourFourTwo. “He gave me a horrible afternoon. I couldn't get past him. I did alright against John Terry.”

Liverpool’s new No. 9 earned widespread acclaim for the form he showed with hometown club Newcastle United in the first half of this season, but Carroll has revealed he even managed to make an impact during his days as a ballboy at St James’ Park.

“I was 12 and there was one game where I threw the ball back quickly, the throw got taken and we scored,” he says.

“I told everyone I set it up. Duncan Ferguson scored it, but it was my assist. The Premier League didn't credit me, though!”

The May issue of FourFourTwo is in shops now, featuring exclusive interviews with Liverpool's Luis Suarez, Andy Carroll, Kenny Dalglish, Damian Comolli and John Henry, as well as the 30 maddest refereeing moments and a look at Gangbangers FC and Plymouth Argyle's mammoth trips to Hartlepool and Carlisle. Subscribe here!

By Liam Twomey