Report: West Ham share ‘wonderful’ star’s vision for his London Stadium future

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 01: Ben Johnson of West Ham United looks on during the Premier League match between Crystal Palace  and  West Ham United at Selhurst Park on January 01, 2022 in London, England. (Photo by Chloe Knott - Danehouse/Getty Images)
Photo by Chloe Knott – Danehouse/Getty Images

West Ham United nor Ben Johnson have any desires to part on a free transfer at the end of the season when the defender’s existing contract expires, according to football.london.

Johnson has now entered the final six-months of the deal he signed at the London Stadium in 2019. The Irons extended the youngsters’ terms following his senior breakthrough under Manuel Pellegrini. But he is yet to put pen to a fresh contract since cementing his status.

The 21-year-old has made 16 of his career 40 senior appearances so far this season. He has also made 15 of his 29 starts this term, as a versatile option in David Moyes’ defence.

WATFORD, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 28: Ben Johnson of West Ham United battles for possession with Juraj Kucka of Watford FC  during the Premier League match between Watford and West Ham United at Vicarage Road on December 28, 2021 in Watford, England. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)
Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images

Moyes has trusted Johnson with stepping in at left-back and on the right to replace Aaron Cresswell and Vladimir Coufal. He also played a full 90-minutes at right-back in six-straight Premier League games between October and November as Coufal recovered from injury.

Johnson earning praise from around West Ham this season

Johnson even impressed Coufal with his efforts during his time out. The Czech star said, via the Evening Standard: “He did well when I was injured, he played really well. I need to praise him because he scored a goal and he did really well in defence. So, very, very good.”

Assistant coach Stuart Pearce has also been full of praise for Johnson’s performances so far this season. The former Irons full-back said after their Carabao Cup win over Manchester City in October, via BBC Sport: “He’s a wonderful professional to deal with and work with.

“We’re very proud to have him out of our academy system, as well. Which is a real plus for us – especially with the connection to this club with the academy. I think he’s just developing and getting better and better.”

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 04: West Ham United's Ben Johnson and Chelsea's Reece James during the Premier League match between West Ham United  and  Chelsea at London Stadium on December 4, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Rob Newell - CameraSport via Getty Images)
Photo by Rob Newell – CameraSport via Getty Images

Free transfer unlikely with Johnson contract clause

Neither West Ham nor Johnson intend to now part on a free transfer when his contact ends this summer. The Hammers also hold an option to extend his current £19k-a-week terms by a further 12-months. But a new deal may also be forthcoming for the London-born talent.

West Ham will not want to risk losing Johnson on a free transfer in 2023 by only extending his contract by a year. Especially as the Evening Standard reported in November that some Premier League clubs are monitoring his situation, as well as a few suitors from abroad.

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