West Ham United are expected to welcome back striker Andy Carroll from injury in time for the Premier League trip to Tottenham Hotspur. The England international has been sidelined since August with a knee injury and has already aborted one comeback after a delay in his return, but there may finally be some light at the end of the tunnel.
Fellow forward Diafra Sakho and full-back Arthur Masuaku are also in line to return after respective back and knee problems. Senegal international Sakho has not played this season due to the injury while Masuaku has been out since suffering a knee problem in the English Football League Cup win over Accrington Stanley at the London Stadium.
Though there is no official announcement from West Ham regarding the fitness of the trio, co-owner David Gold has taken to Twitter to confirm the trio will be available for selection after the upcoming international break. Slaven Bilic's side take on Tottenham on 19 November immediately after the pause in the domestic season, before taking on Manchester United in back-to-back fixtures at Old Trafford in the Premier League and the EFL Cup.
The news represents a major boost for West Ham, who sit just three points above the Premier League relegation zone after 10 matches and could start the London derby against Tottenham fully 13 points adrift of Mauricio Pochettino's side.
The return of Carroll for the visit to Tottenham will be a particular boost for Bilic, who has grown frustrated over the continual absence of the former Newcastle United forward during his tenure in charge. "It was a very strange injury that happened in a game in Romania," Bilic said in October after Carroll's return was put back.
"He stayed on the pitch for the whole game and we didn't notice he'd got injured until the next day. Now, it's longer than we had first thought. All I can say is that he's working hard and is progressing, but it's longer than expected. It's not the speed we and he wanted, but hopefully soon he'll be ready to train with us. I am speaking to him and the medical team every day about it."
The 27-year-old Carroll endured a series of injury-plagued campaigns during his career since moving to east London and has featured in just one top flight match this term. Since joining the Hammers permanently in 2013, Carroll has mustered just 16 goals just over three campaigns and is yet to fully repay the £15m [according to BBC Sport] the club paid Liverpool for his services three years ago.