Tomkins signed to replace ageing Delaney
the 27-year-old is seen as a long-term replacement for Damien Delaney, who has been part of the Eagles’ back line for four years but is now approaching 35 years-of-age and manager Alan Pardew has decided to bring in a fresher face.
Palace had an upgrade on Delaney high on their shopping list, with Brighton’s Lewis Dunk and Borussia Dortmund’s Neven Subotic both strongly linked with moves to south London. However, Pardew is known to have been a keen admirer Tomkins for a number of years and was quick to jump at the chance of signing him when he was made available by the Hammers.
Tomkins will partner Scott Dann in the centre of Palace’s back four, but can also fill in at right-back where he appeared for West Ham in the latter stages of his career in east London – largely down to the form of Winston Reid and Angelo Ogbonna.
Having progressed through West Ham’s academy, Tomkins made his senior debut in a 1-1 draw with Everton in March 2008 and went on to make a total of 208 league appearances, scoring eight times.
Former England youth international becomes Palace's third signing with more in store
Despite never appearing in a senior international, Tomkins played for England at every level from under-16 to under-21 and was also part of the Great Britain side which took part at the 2012 Olympic games in London.
Tomkins joins Andros Townsend and Steve Mandanda in arriving at Selhurst Park, taking Palace’s spending to £23.5 million, while the Eagles are still hoping that a big-money move for Liverpool striker Christian Benteke will be completed in the near future.
The defender will travel to north America with his new team-mates next week where they face games against Philadelphia Union, FC Cincinnati and Vancouver Whitecaps. He is then set to make his competitive debut against West Brom as Palace kick off their 2016/17 campaign at home on 13 August.