West Ham outcast Jose Fonte joins Dalian Yifang

Jose Fonte played only 24 games for West Ham after being brought from Southampton for £8 million by previous West Ham manager Slaven Bilic. Bilic’s managerial stint at West Ham started encouragingly but the start of the 2017-18 season some cracks started to appear.

Those cracks failed to go away, and new signings were brought in by Bilic presumably to help turn things around and help to save Bilic’s job. This was when Fonte arrived at West Ham amidst a pretty mixed bag of incomings for the club that included record signings Marko Arnautović. West Ham continued their bad start to the league campaign, with none of the new signings having the ability to arrest the slump, ensuring the inevitable happened – Bilic was sacked as West Ham manager.

Not a great situation to be in when being brought to a new club, as the manager who wanted to sign you is now gone. Under Bilic, the tactics and team organization were often muddled or confusing, but with Bilic gone and Moyes coming in Fonte found himself surplus to requirements as David Moyes seemed to consider him 5th best centre back at the club at best.
He didn’t only have to put up with being frozen out of the first team picture however, he also had to deal with being insulted by West Ham chairman David Sullivan. Sullivan tweeted that his kids had begged him not to sign Fonte and Robert Snodgrass but insisted he wasn’t in charge of signing the players.

Even though he was dropped by the manager and insulted by the chairman, a quick browse through the West Ham forums shows that the majority of Hammers fans thought Jose Fonte had been a model professional through it all by saying he has handled the whole situation exceptionally well. Most agreed though that even though he is an excellent professional it’s probably a good thing for him to be leaving West Ham if he is unlikely to play any games and they may as well get him of the wages.

A lot of them wished him well in China, and I am sure after spending 10 years of his footballing career in England that fans of Crystal Palace and Southampton will also say similar things about him and wish him well. So after those 10 years, Fonte tweeted out that he has plenty of fond memories of his time in England and thanked all the fans for supporting him in his journey.

Dalian will be thankful to be getting such an experienced and highly professional player in our opinion, so all the best to Jose Fonte.

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