West Ham win Winston Reid race with new long-term deal signed
West Ham United, now 25/1 outsiders with Coral for a top six finish, have secured star defender Winston Reid’s services on a six-and-a-half-year deal.
The Hammers have improbably won the race for the 26-year-old, who looked set to make a cross-capital switch to either Arsenal or Tottenham on a free transfer this summer, but is now under contract in east London until 2021.
“I was speaking with the joint-chairman David Sullivan and everybody and felt like I was valued here,” Reid told West Ham’s official website upon signing his new deal.
“He was clearly very committed to getting the deal done and keeping me at the club, so I’d like to thank him for that and I’m delighted to sign for the next six years.”
Hammers boss Sam Allardyce was preparing to lose New Zealand international Reid, previously stating it was “highly unlikely” the player would remain at the club.
Feeling settled in London, despite interest from other top teams, has had a hand in Reid’s decision, however. “My family are happy living here too,” he added.
“We’ve been part of the club living in London, so we weighed all the factors up and I’m delighted to be staying here. It’s one of those things that took a bit of time, but we got there in the end.”
Reid is the third player in recent weeks to commit his future to West Ham, following academy graduates James Tomkins and Mark Noble. This trio are key components to the Hammers’ spine, all in their mid-20s and getting a core of players under contract ahead of the club’s move to the Olympic Stadium in 2016 appears to be part of the owners’ strategy.
Co-chairmen David Gold and David Sullivan set Allardyce a clear brief to achieve at the start of this season. Big Sam was to play a more attractive style of football, with ex-West Ham frontman Teddy Sheringham taking up a striker coach role, and finish in the top 10.
Despite a recent downturn in form, the Hammers are well on course to end the campaign in the top half, and strongly odds-on at 1/4 to do so. Ending speculation over Reid’s future will be a welcome tonic to everyone connected with West Ham.