Alan Shearer believes that Andy Carroll has shown what he is capable of at Liverpool this season, and the former England international believes the striker will show the Reds that he was worth every cent of the £35m transfer fee next season.
Carroll moved to Merseyside from Newcastle at almost literally the last minute of the 2011 January transfer window.
He cost a British record breaking fee of £35m, and was expected to bring big things to Liverpool, but his performances up until the end of last season have been lacklustre, and the Reds have had some of the worst conversion rates in the Premier League.
But after netting the ball three times in his last seven matches for the Anfield club, and being named man of the match in the side's 4-1 thrashing over Chelsea, Shearer believes that the 23 year old is starting to show that he can be an integral part of the squad.
"He has finished the season well," Shearer told the Liverpool website. "The Andy Carroll that I saw coming on against Chelsea in the FA Cup final was the Andy Carroll I have seen week in and week out at Newcastle.
"He was bullying defenders, scoring goals, running the channels. The ability is there."
Carroll's performance in Liverpool's FA Cup loss was seen as a turning point by numerous pundits, with the striker creating a great deal more chances for the Reds as they suffered at the hands of their opposition.
Shearer insists that he always knew Carroll would take time to adjust to the Liverpool set up after his move away from St James' Park, with the England international now getting back to his top form again.
"People forget that the whole system at Newcastle was designed for Andy," he explained. "That was always the first movement.
"Age is on his side. He absolutely has time. I hope he can build a partnership with Luis Suarez that's there for many years because he's a good lad, Andy.
"He wants to improve and he wants to play. I don't think that Liverpool should change everything just for one player, Liverpool are bigger than that.
"When you go into the team you want chances as a forward and he probably hasn't had as many as he would have liked."
Liverpool are currently on the lookout for a new manager, after Kenny Dalglish, the man who purchased Carroll, was sacked this month. Carroll's place in the squad and the chances he receives next season will no doubt be dependent on how the incoming tactician sees the Reds going forward next season.