West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce's fears over Andy Carroll's injury blow have been eased after Mauro Zarate scored his first Hammers goal in the pre-season defeat to Wellington Phoenix on the first leg of the club's New Zealand tour.
Zarate struck in the second half but couldn't prevent the club suffering their first defeat of pre-season in Auckland, after two first half goals downed the Premier League outfit.
The defeat however was overshadowed by the pre-match news that Carroll will miss the remainder of West Ham's tour and potentially the matches against Schalke 04 and Malaga in Gelsenkirchen in August, with an ankle injury.
Carroll made just 16 appearances last season after failing to recover until January from a heel injury. The England striker's lack of playing time eventually saw him edged out of England's World Cup squad by Rickie Lambert.
A West Ham statement read: "Andy Carroll will miss both games on the Football United tour of New Zealand as a precautionary measure after developing a sore left ankle during training.
"After assessment by the Club's medical experts, it was decided to let the England international rest for both remaining games and receive intensive treatment to ensure he is fit for the start of the season.
"It should be clear that the affected area is not in any way associated with the previous injury he successfully overcame towards the end of last season."
Though the 25 year old is not expected to miss the start of the season, Carroll's injury history is starting to become a deep concern.
The ex-Newcastle United and Liverpool last season became West Ham's record signing and highest paid player but enjoyed little playing time and will be given extra time to recover from his latest blow.
Meanwhile, former Birmingham City loanee Zarate is set to remain in the Hammers attack, giving himself further opportunity to impress ahead of the new campaign.