Christian Benteke's potential arrival would likely see Andy Carroll leave West Ham

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It's difficult to find two Premier League strikers enduring worse seasons than Liverpool's Christian Benteke and West Ham's Andy Carroll.

The Belgian has fallen far short of living up to his £32 million transfer last summer and failed to adapt to Jurgen Klopp's high-press style of football, whilst the latter 27-year-old's injuries have severely impended his progress.

As such, news that Slaven Bilic could look to end Benteke's Merseyside nightmare after just one season and bring him to West Ham is an intriguing one - not for the cut-price £20 million offer and reduced wages, but because of the impact it would have on two players desperate to rediscover form.


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If Benteke, scorer of 42 Premier League goals in 89 games for Aston Villa, were to get his escape route to the capital and reinvent himself, then selling Carroll would become an appealing option to Bilic.

The England international was West Ham's record singing in June 2013 for a fee rising to £17.5 million after add-ons. Throw in the six-year, £90,000-per-week contract he was given and the total package for Carroll reaches a staggering £45 million.

Has such an investment been wise? The evidence suggests not. Since signing permanently, in almost three seasons at the club Carroll has appeared in a claret and blue jersey on only 47 occasions in the Premier League and found the net ten times.

Fitness problems are not his fault, of course, but financially it may be time for the Hammers to cut their losses and recoup some of the money that could be spent on Benteke - a proven goalscorer and one unburdened by injury.

The question looming at West Ham is whether Carroll can ever fulfill the potential that saw fans so excited upon his permanent signing.

But how much longer can fans, Bilic and teammates alike keep their faith in a man who has spent just as much time on the treatment table as on the pitch, if not more?

Many criticisms have been made at Benteke this season - some of them justified - yet on paper he offers a far more appealing option to lead the line next season as the Hammers seek to build upon their successful campaign.

With arguably their best squad for a long time, qualification for European football in sight and a move to the Olympic Stadium imminent, West Ham need to be strengthening further - and a clinical number 9 is exactly what is needed.

For Benteke, a move to West Ham would be ideal and provide him with a chance for Premier League redemption; for Carroll, however, it could well spell the end of a career with the Hammers that promised so much but delivered so little.

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