Shocking treatment of Ben Johnson has seen West Ham inform him that he can leave Who is sanctioning Johnson's departure?

Shocking treatment of Ben Johnson: How not to treat a loyal club servant

It’s disappointing to hear that West Ham is unwilling to meet Ben Johnson’s wage demands. The young defender is asking for £50,000 per week to sign a new long-term contract, but with only four months left on his current deal, he could leave on a free transfer in July.

A source at West Ham stated, “We won’t pay that sort of money so sadly if he leaves, he leaves.” Whilst this stance is disheartening, it’s not entirely accurate. West Ham have paid similar wages and even more to players who have contributed less to the club than Ben Johnson.

When Ryan Fredericks joined on a free transfer, he was earning £50k per week, deemed fair given the absence of a transfer fee. Yet, Johnson seems to be penalised for being a product of the academy rather than an outsider.

Ben Johnson like fellow academy graduate Declan Rice could be set to leave West Ham
Shocking treatment of Ben Johnson: Like fellow academy graduate Declan Rice, Johnson could be set to leave West Ham

To go even further . . . West Ham have probably paid the unused Danny Ings more in 14 months at the club than Ben Johnson has earnt in his Hammers career.

Shocking football and business decision

Despite being with West Ham since he was eight and being a true fan, Johnson’s loyalty is undervalued. He’s seen loan players come and go, earning hefty sums, while he’s remained ready to step up whenever needed, playing in various positions without complaint.

Now, Johnson is asking for a wage that would make him one of the lowest-paid Hammers players. His market value is significant and he has offers on the table from at least three other clubs. With his versatility and homegrown status, it’s puzzling why West Ham are hesitating.

This short-sighted approach could lead to embarrassment for the club. While Johnson may not be a star player, his competence could see him featuring prominently in future seasons, with people questioning why West Ham let him go.

I shudder to think of him moving to another Premier League club, whilst everyone ponder why West Ham allowed a perfectly competent utility player to leave for FREE!

To state the obvious, it will cost more to replace Johnson than it will to keep him. Any home-grown defender of decent ability is going to cost at least £50k per week. That is without factoring in transfer fees and signing bonuses. From a footballing and business perspective, the decision just doesn’t make sense.

However, the messaging it sends to academy graduates is just as bad. In essence, if you come through at West Ham, you’re a second class citizen. . . Welcome to the new West Ham Way.


By Gonzo

West Ham fan for as long as I can remember. I was flukey enough to watch The Irons beat Bury 10-0 in my first ever game . . . True to form, West Ham then went out and signed their central defender 😬

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