Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish maintains he is happy with Andy Carroll's application and believes the striker is proving his commitment to the team ethos.

The club's £35million record signing's performance in Wednesday night's 1-0 Carling Cup semi-final first-leg victory at Manchester City came in for some criticism because of his ineffectiveness. Carroll squandered a golden chance to put his side ahead in the fifth minute and flashed a long-range header wide of the far post later on.

To be fair to Carroll, towards the end of the game Liverpool dropped so deep when they did manage to get the ball up to him there were no team-mates within 40 yards. And Dalglish said: "Andy worked fantastically hard for us and sacrificed himself for the sake of the team."

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