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2012-07-02T06:00:00 Updated 2015-02-19T02:11:44

Jussi happy to be a Hammer

Flying Finn Jussi Jaaskelainen jetted off to West Ham United's pre-season training camp in Austria on Monday morning as he began life as a Hammer.

The experienced former Finland goalkeeper joined West Ham following his departure from Bolton Wanderers, where he enjoyed an outstanding 15-year career between the sticks.

The 37-year-old, who worked under Sam Allardyce and Neil McDonald and played alongside Kevin Nolan, Matt Taylor and Joey O'Brien while with the Trotters, told West Ham TV he cannot wait to get his Hammers career underway.

"I'm absolutely delighted to be here under Big Sam again, having worked with him before for a few seasons," said Jaaskelainen.

"It happened very quickly because when my agent said that West Ham were interested I told him to sort it straight away because I know how Big Sam works, how well he looks after the players and how good his backroom staff are. They were the factors behind why I wanted to come here.

"He brings certain routines and that makes it a lot easier."

Having battled for a starting place at Bolton with Adam Bogdan last season, Jaaskelainen is determined to win the No1 shirt here at West Ham and re-establish himself as one of the Barclays Premier League's best goalkeepers.

"At the start of pre-season, all the goalkeepers are in the same place, but obviously I want to go and get that No1 place and keep that consistent level I have done over the years," he added.

After spending a decade and a half in the north west, Jaaskelainen is also looking forward to starting a new phase of his life living in London.

However, the Finn was quick to point out that his job will come before any sightseeing!

"The main focus is playing for West Ham and to work hard for this football club and if I get to see London then that's good, but it's not my main focus.

"Pre-season is a little bit different this time because I didn't play any games this year [for Bolton], so all off-season I've been looking forward to coming back and training again.

"Normally in the off-season you're tired from playing all season, but this year is a little different so I'm pleased that we've started a week earlier than the other teams.

"We have seven or eight weeks before the season starts so we should be well ready when it does."

Having helped Bolton to gain promotion and establish themselves as a Barclays Premier League force during the previous decade, Jaaskelainen is hoping to repeat that trick with West Ham.

"Obviously the aim is to stay up in our first season," he said. "It's all about staying in the Premier League and bringing in more money and improve the facilities at the football club.

"Hopefully I can play here for the next two or three years."

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