Bengaluru, January 22: Former Liverpool striker Andy Carroll has emerged a shock contender to solve the striker crisis at Tottenham Hotspur if reports in England are to be believed.
Dele Alli was crocked in Spurs' last-gasp win against Fulham on Sunday (January 20), with Harry Kane already out and Son Heung-min away at the Asian Cup.
Fernando Llorente started at number nine in Kane's absence, but failed to make much of an impression and on top of that scored an own goal to make things even worse.
Harry Winks' injury-time winner sunk Fulham but Mauricio Pochettino admitted: "Dele does not look great. He felt his hamstring and we need to assess him in the next few days."
Spurs managed to grind out a comeback win but Pochettino has a huge striker crisis to solve.
Carroll is a free agent in the summer and could be available for just £2million and that low fee has alerted the Lilywhites.
The deal for Carroll, 30, will rest on whether West Ham boss Manuel Pellegrini reckons he needs the 6ft 4in striker to cover for unsettled Marko Arnautovic.
Llorente, whose Tottenham contract is up in the summer, is the only recognised striker Pochettino has available so Tottenham would look at offering Carroll an 18-month deal if they decide he fits the bill.
Spurs also admire Callum Wilson, but his £40m-plus price tag means he is likely to stay at Bournemouth. On top of that, he is unlikely to accept the role of a backup forward behind Kane.
Carroll, who missed a sitter in Saturday's 2-0 defeat at Bournemouth, cost the Hammers £15m from Liverpool six and a half years ago. But injuries have limited him to just 93 starts for Hammers and saw a move to Chelsea collapse last year.
However, Spurs boss Pochettino is not worried by the prospect of having to take a 1-0 lead to Chelsea for Thursday's Carabao Cup semi-final second leg without Kane, Dele and Son.
He said: "It is not a worry because it's an opportunity for different players. The most important thing is to believe we can win."