Andy Carroll will miss the start of the season after being ruled out for four months following surgery on his left ankle.

The 25-year-old forward has not been involved in any of West Ham’s pre-season friendly fixtures so far, prompting speculation he had suffered another injury.

Carroll’s time at Upton Park has been blighted by injury and the club have this morning confirmed the news.

A statement on West Ham’s website read: “West Ham United can confirm that Andy Carroll will have an operation on ligaments in his left ankle in the United States on Friday.

“The England international will then have a week of recovery before starting an intensive period of rehabilitation, which is expected to take four months.

“The club would like to again make clear that this is a new injury and not in any way associated with the injury he successfully overcame at the end of last season.”

Gateshead-born Carroll added: "I'm gutted to be missing the start of the season after working hard during the summer and pre-season. Although this obviously isn't the news I would have wanted, I'm determined to come back fitter and stronger than ever before. I will be doing all I can to get back on the pitch with the lads as soon as possible."

The former Liverpool and Newcastle United forward scored twice in 12 Premier League starts last season as injury – once again – disrupted his season at the Boleyn Ground.

Carroll, who is the club’s record signing at £15m, has made 34 league starts in two season with the Hammers.