Chris Hughton hails improving Andy Carroll

Newcastle boss Chris Hughton hailed striker Andy Carroll after he struck once again to hurt one of the Barclays Premier League big guns.

The 21-year England international, whose goal at Arsenal earlier this month secured a famous 1-0 victory, took his tally for the season to nine to ensure champions Chelsea left the north-east with only a point to show for their efforts.

Blues boss Carlo Ancelotti, who returned to London by coach along with his players after their flight plans were dashed by bad weather, abandoned his favoured 4-3-3 formation in an effort to keep Carroll quiet, but the local boy was not to be denied.

Hughton said: "Andy doesn't play with fear. He's not fearful of any opposition or any individual - that's how he is at the moment.

"When you are in a confident mood and you are scoring goals, that's how it should be.

"You should look forward to every game. You should think that every game is an opportunity to play well and score.

"Going back to last season, he came up against some really tough, Championship-hardened centre-halves who at times physically got the better of him.

"But his movement across defenders has improved, as has his general movement.

"I think he realises he is up against better players now and to get the better of them, his movement has got to be better.

"He is in really confident mood at the moment."

Newcastle, who had dumped the champions out of the Carling Cup in September, knew a repeat was a tall order with Ancelotti fielding as strong a side as he could muster, but they got off to the perfect start.

A breakdown in communication between Brazilian Alex and keeper Petr Cech saw the defender serve the ball up on a plate for Carroll to tap home from two yards.

But Chelsea' response was concerted and Salomon Kalou levelled in first-half injury-time when his shot was deflected past keeper Tim Krul by the unfortunate Steven Taylor.

The Ivory Coast international passed up a glorious opportunity to win the game 10 minutes from time when he fired into the side netting with the goal at his mercy, but the Magpies, for whom new central defensive partners Taylor and Sol Campbell were excellent, deserved their point.

Ancelotti said: "I'm happy for the performance. We didn't start so well and conceded too easily and for this reason, our game was more difficult.

"But the reaction was good and by the end of the first half, we had total control.

"We created a lot of chances, but needed to convert more to win the game.

"The reason for this result is the same - at the moment, we are unable to convert our chances."

Ancelotti confirmed that Alex will fly to Brazil this week to undergo surgery on his knee with John Terry due to return to full training, as is Frank Lampard.

Arts and Entertainment
Ramsay Bolton in Game of Thrones
tvSeries 5, Episode 3 review
News
peoplePair enliven the Emirates bore-draw
Arts and Entertainment
tv
News
Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband (R) and Boris Johnson, mayor of London, talk on the Andrew Marr show in London April 26
General electionAndrew Marr forced to intervene as Boris and Miliband clash on TV
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence