The imminent arrival Portuguese defender Jose Fonte from Southampton has thrown a shadow at James Collins future with West Ham being their only option on terms of selling the Hammers loyalist.

Fonte who was signed at fee of around £8 million last week is set to be played alongside Winston Reid at the heart of the defence. With Reece Oxford and Reece Burke set to move up the pecking order and Angello Ogbonna third in line, the 33-year-old’s place in the starting lineup look slim.

Collins contract at the Olympic stadium runs until the end of the 2018 season, but his unlikely chance to command a first team spot at the Premier League level might see him move to a neighbouring side with his family is well settled in London.

Although Palace boss, Sam Allardyce could see him as a squad player, the former Hammers manager is looking to tighten up his defence in the hope of avoiding relegation.

The Welsh international has had two spells with West Ham, with the first starting way back in 2005. He then left the club in 2009 to join Aston Villa but rejoined in 2012. The Welsh international was a key part of the Hammers’ defence during the time that Allardyce was in charge. He started in the recent meeting between the two sides that saw the Hammers ease past Palace with a 2-0 win.

At age of 33, Collins has made 11 appearances in the Premier League this season, 10 of which were starts.