With ongoing speculation surrounding former England goalkeeper Ben Foster and rumoured interest from former loan club Watford, late yesterday evening West Bromwich Albion confirmed the 35-year-old had completed a permanent switch back to Vicarage Road.
Following our relegation from the Premier League in 2017/18 Foster didn’t seem to be an issue for us in terms of retaining his services as he’d often spoken about enjoying life at the club, being settled himself and settled with his family in the area, but as soon as Watford speculation surfaced it’s an educated guess to say his head turned.
A refusal to head out for our training camp abroad and potential transfer fees being pulled out of thin air in the media, it was always likely a speedy resolution would be found, especially once we signed former Aston Villa goalkeeper Sam Johnstone from Manchester United.
The fee is undisclosed but given his age and the fact we needed him out, at best it would only have been a couple of million and he’s signed an initial 12-month deal with a 12-month option I believe.
Having signed for us on loan initially from Birmingham City back in the summer of 2011, before the deal became permanent the following summer for a reported £4million, he went on to make 183 starting appearances for us with a single showing from the bench.
Thanks for the memories Baggies, it’s been 7 years that was honestly a pleasure and an honour to play each week. Thanks for making it a home and looking after me. And to all the staff and players, thanks for making it enjoyable to wake up and come into work everyday ???????? @wba
— Ben Foster (@BenFoster) July 5, 2018
Such a shame it had to end in this manner as that’s was at the forefront of fans’ minds.
— Stu (@stuwba68) July 5, 2018
Ouch ! Bullseye there though mate.
— Onthewing12 (@Onthewing4) July 5, 2018
Your a top keeper!!! But for you to leave @WBA after what you have said in the past is a dog act!! We will see you back in the premier league soon enough…. and I hope you take the others who think they are better than what they are!!! Loyalty pfft
— Brad (@foothillspool84) July 5, 2018
My heart is a little bit broken but hey ho.
My beloved baggies go on without you .
— Sandra Hughes (@phoenixbaggie) July 5, 2018
It didn't have to end this way Ben ffs
— C (@LethalLeko) July 5, 2018
And thanks for saying you're not looking for a move and don't want to leave yet kick off when you can't have one…. An explanation would be nice as I'm only bitter… thought you were in it for the long run. Good luck at Watford.
— Andrew Plant (@_andrewwww) July 5, 2018
They probably aren't Baggies fans, he probably lied about that too.
— Matt (@MutleyyWBA) July 5, 2018
Disappointed in you Ben. I’m sure it’ll pass with time as you’ve been excellent for us. Best of luck.
— SemperTeFallant (@MattRowley83) July 5, 2018
Seriously dissapointed by this. Pity you felt the need to come out and say what you did before the season ended. I'm sure there are two sides to the story so let's hear why the change of heart. In the meantime #wenotme enjoy the M1
— Jamie Humphries (@JHumphries78) July 6, 2018
Had you gone to the training camp, not come out with the "I'm staying" comments – you'd be being wished good luck by all at Albion.
Instead your last couple of weeks tarnished it. All the best, just a shame you won't be remembered as fondly as you should have been.
— Adam Townsend (@Adam_Townsend) July 5, 2018
You were a great servant, but you've completely tainted yourself by making that statement about staying after relegation and now jumping ship. Massive disappointment.
— Owen Green (@Owen_Green96) July 5, 2018