ANDY CARROLL is hoping to rewind the clock to his glory days as a Newcastle United player after completing a dramatic deadline-day return to St James’ Park.

Eight-and-a-half years after leaving Tyneside in a controversial £35m switch to Liverpool, Carroll has returned to his hometown club in an attempt to resurrect a career that has stalled badly in recent years in the face of some chronic injury problems.

The 30-year-old, who was a free agent following his release from West Ham United earlier in the summer, has signed an initial one-year deal, and agreed a dramatic cut in wages to re-join the Magpies.

He will be paid a vastly-reduced weekly wage, with the opportunity to significantly increase his pay packet if he plays and scores on a regular basis.

A succession of injury problems mean he has only made 25 Premier League starts in the last three seasons, but after undergoing ankle surgery earlier this year, he has recovered sufficiently to be able to restart some light running. Newcastle’s medical staff subjected him to an intense examination before giving the green light to yesterday’s deal, and are hopeful he will be able to return to full training within a fortnight.

Carroll was the subject of interest from clubs in the MLS and on the continent this summer, but his heart was always set on a return to Newcastle and Steve Bruce was more than happy to agree to his return.

“It feels very good,” said Carroll, who was one of two deadline-day arrivals, with Newcastle also completing the £5m capture of Swedish full-back Emil Krafth. “My friends and family are here, and it’s the club that I support – it is home.

“I enjoyed the time I spent here, and hopefully I can carry on where I left off. When I left eight-and-a-half years ago, I was scoring goals and I was enjoying my football. It’s been a pretty tough time since then, and I just want to get back to that.

“I know it’s home. I’ve played here, I’ve spoken to the fans – I am a fan – and my family is here. For me to get back to where I was, I think this is the only place for me.”

Gateshead-born Carroll, who is set to wear the number seven shirt, made his senior debut for Newcastle at the age of just 17, helping his side claim a UEFA Cup win in Palermo in November 2006.

He was a key part of the club’s Championship-winning team under Chris Hughton, and was handed the coveted number nine shirt upon their return to the Premier League. He scored 13 goals in 16 games in his first half-season in the top-flight, a return that earned him a maiden England cap and saw him sold to Liverpool for a then club-record fee.

He struggled to make much of an impact at Anfield, but while his subsequent seven-year spell at West Ham was also something of a disappointment, Bruce is confident he remains capable of making up for lost time.

“To bring a local hero like Andy back to Newcastle United is fantastic,” said Bruce. “He is very excited to be home. He is a big, physical threat in the opposition box and another great option for us at the top end of the pitch.

“He gives us something different to what we already have, and we’ll do our best to get him flying again.”

While Carroll’s return hogged the headlines, Newcastle were also able to confirm the £5m capture of Krafth, who moved to Tyneside from French club Amiens.

Having signed a four-year deal, Krafth could find himself thrust straight into Newcastle’s starting line-up for Sunday’s Premier League opener against Arsenal, with Bruce having signed the 25-year-old to provide an alternative option to either DeAndre Yedlin or Javier Manquillo at right-back.

A 20-time Sweden international, who started last summer’s World Cup quarter-final with England, Krafth has played in Italy, with Bologna, and France, with Amiens, and is looking forward to testing himself amid the cut and thrust of the Premier League.

“It’s a good moment in my career to take a step forward,” said the defender. “The plans Newcastle had for me, I felt like it was fitting me perfectly, so that was why I chose Newcastle.

“In my career, I’ve played in Italy and France, and I’ve always wanted to try the Premier League also. I think the league and the style fits how I play as a player.

“In those countries I’ve been in, I’ve learned a lot there also. In Italy, there was a lot of tactics as a defender, so I learned a lot there, and I learned a lot in France where the football is a little bit more like the Premier League.”

Krafth is confident he will be able to handle the physical challenge of the English game, having spent the formative years of his career in his homeland with Osters IF and Helsingborgs, representing the latter in the Europa League.

“I don’t like to talk about myself like this, but I’m very solid, very physical, and I’m good with the ball,” he added, in an interview with Newcastle’s official website. “I’m good one against one in defence.

“That’s why I wanted to try the Premier League – I think it will fit me as a player. It’s a hard league to play in physically, and I like to play physically, so hopefully it’s going to fit me well.”

Bruce identified the right-hand side of the back four as a potential weakness as soon as he took over on Tyneside, and regards Krafth’s capture as a key piece of business.

“He turned 25 last week and has great experience, with 20 caps for Sweden and having played in the top-flight in three different countries,” said the Newcastle boss. “He’s a good height for a full-back, speaks excellent English, and is a very good player. He’s a really good acquisition.”

Yesterday’s business means Newcastle finished the summer window having signed five players – Joelinton, Allan Saint-Maximin and Jetro Willems have already been integrated into the squad – with Jacob Murphy becoming the latest player to leave when he agreed a season-loan at Sheffield Wednesday.

Murphy chose to join Wednesday ahead of Huddersfield and Derby County, having spent the second half of last season on loan at West Brom.

Achraf Lazaar remains in discussions with a couple of Italian clubs, and he could yet agree a loan departure before the Italian transfer window closes later this month.