Tomkins will have to fight hard for his starting place


James Tomkins of West Ham United celebrates scoring the winning  goalJames Tomkins will face a battle to break up the Scott Dann-Damien Delaney partnership at Crystal Palace warns Paddy McCarthy, who called time on his Eagles career and his playing days when he hung up his boots this summer.

The 33-year-old Dubliner who spent eight seasons at Palace said  “It is a good signing and a statement of intent from the football club, It shows where Palace is at the moment that they can spend so big on a centre-half. But he will have to come in and hit the ground running because last year probably our two standout players were Damien Delaney and Scott Dann.”

“I’m sure he’ll have to come and really fight for his place. Scott and Damien aren’t going to give up their shirts easily. It makes for excellent competition for places. Martin Kelly is in there as well. It gives them strength in an area where Brede Hangeland and Adrian Mariappa had been lost. Tomkins is a proven player at Premier League level. He is at a great age where he still has potential to grow. But Scott and Damo are two of the best I have played with. Damien came into the football club was it was really, really struggling – five games without a win and bottom of the Championship – and has been a virtual ever-present since. He bought into the club and gave everything for the cause. You saw his emotion after the play-off final. It showed how much he cared. He is fitter than he probably was at 21. He is an unbelievable athlete – which you have to be in the Premier League. Any forward comes off the pitch knowing they’ve had a game off him. Now they have got three top centre-halves. That can only be healthy.”

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I am Season Ticket Holder in West stand lower at the London Stadium and before that, I used to stand in the Sir Trevor Brooking Lower Row R seat 159 in the Boleyn Ground and in the Eighties I stood on the terraces of the old South Bank. I am a presenter on the West Ham Podcast called A Blogger on a member of the West Ham Supporters Advisory Board (SAB), Founder of a Youtube channel called Mr West Ham Football at,

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