Leeds United handed potential transfer boost in pursuit of West Ham defender

West Ham United have announced Ben Johnson will leave the club upon the expiry of his current deal
-Credit: (Image: Getty)

Leeds United target Ben Johnson is set to officially leave West Ham United upon the expiry of his current deal.

Johnson, 24, had been locked in negotiations with the Hammers over fresh terms at the London Stadium but those talks have failed to find a solution. The defender made 25 appearances in total last season which included 4 Premier League starts under David Moyes.

Leeds have been monitoring Johnson for some time and would now be free to talk to the player regarding a potential switch to Elland Road this summer. Johnson has also already been capped 10 times at international level with England's Under-21 side.

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Johnson issued a statement via West Ham's website following his departure, thanking the club for all they have done during his 17-year stay in London. He began: "Thank you to everyone associated with West Ham United for supporting me over the last 17 years and developing me into a first-team player."

"I have been blessed to have come through the Academy of Football and to play for the first team in the Premier League, domestic cups and in European competitions. I just want to be known and remembered for my time at West Ham for having played with a smile on my face and having really enjoyed my football. That’s really important to me.

"I would say the most special memory I have is winning the UEFA Europa Conference League. To be involved in a European trophy win doesn’t come around frequently, so to be around and be part of it, and to be able to achieve that with West Ham was incredible. My dreams were exceeded by what happened two seasons ago and I’m just so, so pleased I did it as a West Ham player. I’ll never forget that night.

"I wish West Ham every success for the upcoming season under the new head coach and of course I’m going to miss all my teammates and the staff, along with the supporters.

"West Ham will always be a part of my life which I’ll remember with fondness and a lot of love. I’ve developed into a young man and better player because of West Ham, so finally a huge thank you to the Club!"