By Hughie Southon
Ben Johnson has still not signed a new deal with the Hammers despite his contract being due to expire at the end of the season.
The academy product’s representatives were looking for “top dollar” when talks were put on hold earlier this year with the Hammers not sure at that time of the player’s form,
Since he returned to the first team recently however he has shown his versatility in filling right and left back positions and has on a couple of occasions been used at central defence.
He is a player the club really do need to keep a hold on and last night at Old Trafford he gave as near a perfect defensive performance as it gets.
Right now however, the club are delaying negotiations with him and others until we see where we are at the end of the term.
But the young man has been with the club since he was a kid and is believed keen to remain – we hope so.
This to me is a VERY dangerous game, being played with a Very Talented West Ham supporting academy product in Ben Johnson.
There aren’t many academy products that make the grade but Ben is one of the few that has. Some have been critical of him, seemingly without the understanding that he is a young developing player whose opportunities to build on his performances are sparse. However, I can see a very talented two footed-player and it would annoy me greatly if he was to leave, for pocket change and a proper contract.
We are NOT a moneybags club, a Citeh or a Chelski and we need to hold on to and develop ANY talent which comes through our Academy.
The Cat – spot on comment. I too have been frustrated by negative comments about a versatile and talented Academy product, a young man with a terrific temperament. We have let go too many without even a run out, and this lad has played all along the back line.