Bilic full of praise for Carroll

West Ham United boss Slaven Bilic heaped praise on Andy Carroll after the striker struck the winner in a memorable 2-1 triumph over Chelsea on Saturday.

Mauro Zarate fired the Hammers in front after 17 minutes before Chelsea were reduced to ten men on the stroke of half-time, Nemanja Matic seeing red after collecting his second yellow card of the afternoon.

Gary Cahill managed to restore parity early in the second half, only for Carroll to pop up with the winner 11 minutes from time.

"Andy is a big player for us, and also for England. He is special," Bilic told his club's official website.

"He gives us a lot of options. It's not just long balls, he is a great player, his quality has never been in doubt. We just needed to get him fit.

"Now we are in a really good situation regarding his fitness and he should be fit and ready for the long-term.

"We will have a lot of benefits from having him fit. It is not just his work inside the box but also his contribution outside the box.

"His pressing was amazing; his work-rate was excellent. He occupied Terry and Cahill very well."

Reflecting on his side's impressive performance against the defending Premier League champions, Bilic added: "There are always lots to talk about after 90 minutes of football. I am very proud of my club and my team.

"It was brilliant to beat the champions, it's a great feeling. There is nothing wrong in admitting that we are playing really good. We deserved to win.

"We want to continue to play well and if we defend as a unit and attack as a team we have a chance to win every game. We are very happy."