Andy Carroll is putting all talk of his future on hold as he attempts to help Newcastle return to winning ways.
The 30-year-old striker is attempting to rebuild his career with his home-town club after finally returning from ankle surgery to remind onlookers of the the attributes which almost nine years ago prompted Liverpool to invest £35million in his services.
Carroll arrived back at St James’ Park on a highly-incentivised initial 12-month pay-as-you-play deal hoping to persuade the Magpies’ hierarchy to offer him a longer stay, although ahead of Leicester’s New Year’s Day visit to Tyneside, he is refusing to look too far into the future.
He said: “I want to stay as long as possible. I’m happy. I haven’t spoken to anybody about contracts and I won’t.
“I will just see how it goes.”
Carroll is yet to find the back of the net since his return, although his muscular approach and aerial prowess on the pitch and experience and local knowledge off it have proved invaluable to Steve Bruce to date.
He will hope for a 13th appearance of his second spell against the Foxes, who are managed by Brendan Rodgers, the man who initially loaned and then sold him to West Ham during his time at the Anfield helm.
Carroll played the full 90 minutes in Saturday’s 2-1 defeat by Everton, the Magpies’ first in the league at home since the opening day of the campaign, and he and his team-mates are looking for a swift response to that and their Boxing Day reverse at Manchester United.
He said: “We definitely want to look to start the year in style. It has been another quick turn-around.
“Two defeats over the festive period, we now just have to bounce back. We just have to move on and think about the next game.”
Newcastle have already lost twice to Leicester this season, on penalties after a tight Carabao Cup encounter on Tyneside in August and a 5-0 drubbing at the King Power Stadium in the league a month later, although Bruce has been delighted with the response to that debacle.
However, he will have to contend with a lengthy injury list as he looks for revenge with defender Fabian Schar and striker Joelinton having emerged from the Everton game, which full-back Javier Manquillo missed because of a groin strain, with hamstring and calf problems respectively.