Former Newcastle United striker Andy Carroll is hoping for a return to the club from Liverpool but is concerned with how fans will react, according to Sky Tyne and Wear sources.
Newcastle have had an initial loan offer for Carroll turned down by Liverpool.
He left Newcastle for £35m in January 2011 and has now been told he can find a new club.
Now, a source close to Carroll has told Sky Tyne and Wear that he would prefer a move to Newcastle.
However, it is understood that he fears hostility from United's fans having left the club for a record transfer fee for an Engiish player 18 months ago.
Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers' admission that he could be prepared to let Carroll leave on loan earlier this week has sparked much debate over his long-term future, with AC Milan, West Ham and now Newcastle linked with his services.
Carroll appeared to be finding some form towards the end of last season and earned a place in Roy Hodgson's squad for Euro 2012, scoring in the group stage victory over Sweden.
But his overall career with Liverpool has not been a success, with just six Premier League goals in 42 appearances to date.
Newcastle boss Alan Pardew already has Demba Ba, Papiss Cisse and Shola Ameobi in his attacking arsenal, while the addition of Carroll would add a different dimension to their forward line.
The Gateshead-born player was widely criticised by the Tyneside faithful following his decision to move to Anfield.
The former Redheugh FC Boys club star was booed by some fans at St James' Park when Liverpool played their 2011/2012 Premier League fixture on Tyneside in April 2012.
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