Liverpool legend Alan Hansen believes England's wingers must provide Andy Carroll with a good supply of crosses if the striker is to thrive at the European Championships.

With Wayne Rooney suspended, England manager Roy Hodgson is expected to choose either Carroll or Manchester United's Danny Welbeck to lead the line against France on Monday.

Both players impressed in the warm-up victories against Norway and Belgium but Hansen believes the Liverpool striker will be given a chance to terrorise a fragile France defence in Donetsk.

"Welbeck might have scored in his last game against Belgium, but Carroll should not be discounted - particularly if Hodgson can devise a tactical plan to ensure we see the best of him, rather than the centre-forward who was a shadow of his former self for much of last season with Liverpool," Hansen told the Telegraph.

"Until the final six weeks of the season, it was beginning to look increasingly difficult to see a way back for Carroll, yet he now goes to the Euros as a man in form."

Carroll appeared weighted down by his £35m price tag for much of last season at Liverpool but forced his way into Hodgson's squad with a series of impressive displays towards the end of the campaign. And Hansen insists the 23-year-old striker can flourish in Poland and Ukraine, if he is given the right support.

"There are two key fundamentals when it comes to Carroll," said Hansen. "You simply have to give him proper service and the right support. Without that, you risk him being isolated and nullified because he is not a player who thrives on being left on his own.

"At the end of the season, he was finally beginning to produce for Liverpool the form that he displayed for Newcastle when, at times such as the game against Arsenal at the Emirates in Nov 2010, he was unplayable.

"I remember that performance clearly because he terrorised Arsenal, both in the air and on the ground, before scoring the only goal of the game to claim three points for Newcastle.

"Six months ago, however, Carroll's form had deserted him to the extent that he was not even winning his aerial battles because he seemed to have lost the strength to jump.

"There was a game at Manchester City, when he was really struggling for form, where we saw how difficult he finds it to make an impact when he does not receive the support or service that his game relies upon."

With Hodgson expected to employ a static 4-4-2 system, Carroll or Welbeck will be asked to play alongside Ashley Young for the opening two games.

"Carroll is not the type of striker who can lead the line on his own as he is not a classic hold-up player and he also does not run down the channels," said Hansen.

"Carroll thrives on crosses, but while James Milner, Stewart Downing and Ashley Young can all deliver from the flanks, will he get the service that can make him so dangerous?

"The Carroll questions mean it will be interesting to see how Hodgson chooses his tactics, but he is a coach who will have his players organised and he will have a plan to get the best out of Carroll.

He added: "I believe it is by no means guaranteed that Carroll will be a hit at the Euros, but he will certainly pose problems for defenders and make them think hard about how they shape up against England."

"With Rooney sidelined for the games against France and Sweden, England need some muscle up front. But they must make sure they help him to help them."