Newcastle target West Ham ace

West Ham defender James TomkinsNewcastle are preparing a move for West Ham defender James Tomkins, according to reports from talkSPORT.

The Magpies have endured a tough start to their Premier League campaign, notching 20 points in 20 matches.

One reason for this has been the club’s shaky defence, which has conceded 37 goals, one more than bottom placed QPR.

This has forced manager Alan Pardew to set his sights on defensive options and he has highlighted Tomkins as one of his top targets.

The Hammers star has become frustrated this season by a lack of first-team opportunities, leading to speculation that he may be willing to leave London.

Last season Tomkins struck up a solid relationship with Winston Reid, but this term Sam Allardyce has elected to partner the New Zealand international with James Collins.

The Upton Park club will be reluctant to allow the 23-year-old to leave, but he may hand in a transfer request should Newcastle’s interest further.

Tomkins graduated from the East London outfit’s famous academy set-up, making is debut during the 2008 season.

He left the club later that year to join Derby on loan, but returned to the West Ham first-team for the 2009/10 season.

His impressive form last year gained him a placed in the Great Britain team for the 2012 Olympic Games.

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