Crystal Palace

Profit Players: James Tomkins

Profit Players: James Tomkins

West Ham supporters have been in fine voice in recent times after seeing their side record a third straight Premier League victory at the weekend.

Manuel Pellegrini’s men went into their clash with Crystal Palace on Saturday off the back of beating both Cardiff City and Newcastle United in the preceding seven days, and thus seeking to record three wins on the spin in the Premier League for the first time since December 2016. And the Hammers did just that as goals from Robert Snodgrass, Javier Hernandez, and Felipe Anderson inspired the hosts to a 3-2 victory at the London Stadium, a result which moved them up to 11th place in the Premier League table.

As such, there have been many delighted West Ham fans up and down the country in recent times, several of whom will be hoping for even more from their side as the season wears on given the relatively busy transfer window their team embarked upon during the summer.

The club’s hierarchy were praised greatly for the business they conducted, yet the same can’t really be said of the surprising decision to let James Tomkins join Palace back in the summer of 2016, making the move to Selhurst Park for £10.53 million (as per Transfermarkt).

And while the Hammers made a healthy profit on the defender, given he came up through the youth ranks at the East London club, the fact he has continued to be a hugely adept Premier League centre back suggests that Roy Hodgson’s Palace were the only beneficiaries from West Ham’s surprising call.

Ultimately, Tomkins made his name at West Ham in appearing 243 times for the Hammers over the course of eight years, which included sticking with the club following their relegation to the Championship in 2011, only to help them return to the Premier League at the first time of asking.

And with regular football at top tier level for the Hammers under several different managers, it’s clear just how accomplished a defender he was in the Premier League for the club – and given he was only 27 when they sold him, he had plenty of years left playing for West Ham.

And that’s why it came as something of a surprise when, fresh from helping the Hammers finish seventh in the table in the 2015/16 season, manager-at-the-time Slaven Bilic sanctioned his departure to Palace – the Eagles surely couldn’t have believed their luck.

And given just how vital Tomkins continues to be for Hodgson’s side, alongside West Ham’s struggles over the past few years defensively, it’s plainly obvious that the Hammers made a big error letting the 29-year-old leave.

Tomkins featured 24 times in the league for Palace in the 2016/17 season as they staved off relegation under Sam Allardyce, while he was also a regular feature under Hodgson last term in appearing 28 times as the Eagles eventually finished 11th in the division.

And with starts in all but two of their 16 league games this term, the 29-year-old continues to be an integral member of the squad at Selhurst Park – he seems to have formed quite the partnership with fellow centre back Mamadou Sakho.

Thus, while West Ham got a sizable fee for the 29-year-old, he has continued to prove his adeptness at Premier League level during his time at Palace – the Hammers’ struggles defensively last term only further highlighted the blunder Bilic made.

As such, it’s pretty clear that Palace have been the only beneficiaries from West Ham’s surprising decision to cash in on Tomkins back in the summer of 2016.

Palace and West Ham fans… what do you think? Let us know!

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