Sam Allardyce wants to make his old  West Ham and Crystal Palace ally James Tomkins his first signing at West Brom, Football Insider can exclusively reveal.

The experienced defender, 31, has slipped down the pecking order at Selhurst Park and is now their fourth choice centre-back.

A West Brom source has told Football Insider that Allardyce, 66, is keen to take advantage of Tomkins’ status to try and entice him to the Hawthorns in the January window.


The former England manager was appointed the new Baggies manager on Wednesday hours after the sacking of Slaven Bilic.

Allardyce has agreed the terms of an 18-month contract with West Brom in what is his first managerial post since he was dismissed by Everton in May 2018.

The struggling Premier League outfit have decided to appoint the proven survival specialist now to give him time to use the January transfer window to strengthen the squad.

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Allardyce is a big admirer of Tomkins, who has spent the last four years at Palace since signing from West Ham in a £10million deal.

Prior to that, the defender spent eight years at Upton Park and was managed by Allardyce at both of the London clubs.

Tomkins has not had a single minute of action at Palace this season, although he was on the bench for Wednesday night’s 1-1 draw against West Ham.

West Brom boss

The Baggies hierarchy have noted how Allardyce kept Everton, Crystal Palace and Sunderland up in his previous three club posts after taking over midway through the season.

They are expected to present Allardyce with funds in January after Bilic spent £45million in the summer, mostly on loan signings already at the club.

In other news, West Brom are working on £10m-plus deal as they look to beat Premier League rivals to signing.