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Pellegrini set for the opening game on Sunday

Manuel Pellegrini is ready for the Hammers first pre-season match and looking forward to it.

We go into action against FC Winterthur tomorrow afternoon with Issa Diop and Ryan Fredericks ready to make  their Claret and Blue debuts..

Pellegrini said: “We have had a very positive first week of work in Switzerland. We have had a very warm welcome in Bad Ragaz and the hotel and training facilities we have used have been first-class.

“I and my coaches have started to get to know the players and the staff who were already with the club and I think we already have a good spirit in the camp.

“The players have worked really hard during the first week and I can already see the fitness levels are improving. We are also introducing them to the way we want to play football this season and they are listening and responding well.”


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Manuel Pellegrini and his backroom staff
Manuel Pellegrini and his backroom staff enjoy a lighter moment after training in Switzerland. Pic via whufc.com

The only players not available for selection will be Michail Antonio and Winston Reid, who have been working on their rehabilitation from hamstring and knee injuries.

The manager added: “We have our first pre-season match at Winterthur on Sunday and this will give me the opportunity to see the players in a game situation for the first time.

“We will use two different teams, with no individual playing for longer than minutes, as is the normal situation with the first match.”

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About Hugh5outhon1895

Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!" Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon