Paul Parker: Ben Johnson Needs To Move On From West Ham

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Paul Parker: Ben Johnson Needs To Move On From West Ham

Gambling.com sat down with former Manchester United and England defender Paul Parker to discuss the future of West Ham United right-back Ben Johnson.

The Hammers defender, who is Parker’s cousin, is out of contract in the summer and weighing up his future.

Reports earlier this season suggested that Johnson was asking for a deal worth £60,000 per week in order to commit his future to West Ham.

Johnson will hope to be involved when West Ham face Everton at Goodison Park on Saturday afternoon, in a game the Hammers are underdogs to win with leading football betting sites.

The Hammers are outsiders on betting apps to finish in the top six, but a 4-2 win at home to Brentford keeps them in the mix. Johnson was a late substitution in that win.

The Athletic wrote in January that the club had offered Johnson a new four-year contract, but no agreement has been reached as the player seeks reassurances over his game time.

The closer we get to the summer, the more likely it is that Johnson will seek pastures new ahead of next season.

The 24-year-old, who is willing to play in any position for the Hammers, has only made four Premier League starts this term and Parker believes he should move elsewhere in search of more first-team minutes.

Crystal Palace and Leeds United are both credited with an interest in Johnson, who came through the ranks at West Ham after joining the club at the age of seven.

“I don’t think he can stay there if I am honest," Parker told Gambling.com. 

"It’s blatantly obvious at the moment that the manager (David Moyes) is not looking at him.

“There were clubs that have come in for him so I think he needs to move on and he needs to change clubs to get regular football.”

Parker won three Premier League titles during his time at Manchester United, but he departed for Derby County in 1996 after the emergence of Gary Neville pushed him down the pecking order at Old Trafford.

And Parker, who believes Johnson’s versatility is a major asset, claims Moyes is not making the most out of the West Ham academy product’s talent.

“He’s come on and played in midfield and done really well recently, as well as at right- and left-back, and he’s a good all-round player,” he continued.

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“He’s a better all-round player than me in that sense! I had my set position and that was it.

"But with him, I saw him come on as a sub into midfield against Bristol City and did really well, while he did the same against Sheffield United, where he was excellent.

“The lad has got a lot of ability and that ability isn’t being utilised, but more suffocated. He needs to get out there and breathe.

“He doesn’t want to leave West Ham as it's been his life from a young age, but sometimes you can’t let your heart rule your head.

“If you don’t go and take an opportunity and you stay at a club where it doesn’t work out, you can end up having a lot of regrets for the rest of your life.”