West Ham United midfielder Mark Noble has defended Andy Carroll over claims he goes to ground too easily.

Noble responded to claims from Southampton's Adam Lallana that Carroll won a succession of 'soft' free-kicks at Upton Park, two of which led to goals in the hosts' 4-1 victory.

He insisted: "Andy's a big man and if he doesn't go down he won't win any free-kicks because the refs think that's he's too big to get a free-kick.

"When you've got somebody as big as Andy in the box he's going to cause havoc. Centre-halves will be so desperate to win the ball that they'll do anything.

"He got an elbow in the first half which went unpunished. But he can put up with it."