West Ham United's players were out on the training pitches early on Wednesday morning ahead of their pre-season meeting with Rot-Weiss Erfurt.

The team went through drills and a practice match before enjoying a gentle cycle back to the hotel to rest ahead of travelling to the game.

A welcome sight back on the training pitches was that of club captain Kevin Nolan, who did a number of light stretches and core work in the hot sun with the club's medical staff. The skipper suffered a toe injury in Saturday's friendly game against Colchester United and will continue to be assessed as the week goes on.

The Rot-Weiss Erfurt fixture is the first of three matches the Hammers will play during their week-long stay in Germany and manager Sam Allardyce will blend a mix of youth and experience for the club's first ever meeting with their hosts. Live text updates will appear on whufc.com from 7pm.

For Winston Reid, the games cannot come soon enough after three days of tough training since landing on Monday.

"This is what we are here for - to play matches," Reid told West Ham TV. "It is always the highlight of the week when you are training as that is what you are gearing towards.

"This game against Rot-Weiss Erfurt is the first of what will be three tough games, but that is what you want - tough challenges - and to get through them, so we are all looking forward to that."

Despite his young age, Reid has a wealth of international experience with New Zealand under his belt and has represented his country all over the world. Earlier this month, of course, he lined up for West Ham in Austria. 

"It is enjoyable to go to other countries and play a variety of teams," he confirmed. "It is good to get away, train in a different place and then play - I know the boys certainly welcome that."

Reid and the squad are aware that there will be some fantastic travelling support at the games in Germany, with the pinnacle set to be the 30,000-plus home and away fans set to attend Friday's big match at Dynamo Dresden.

"We have great support and they follow us wherever we go and it is fantastic for us to play in front of that support, especially with the extra efforts they make in pre-season. We appreciate that and hope they get as much out of it all as we do."

On what was one of the hottest days of the year so far in Dresden on Wednesday, cold drinks were a welcome sight for the players as they made their way off the training pitch.

"It was extra hot today, I had trouble in catching my breath a few times. But it went OK and when you compare to a couple of weeks ago our fitness is getting better and we are going in the right direction.

"There is good banter amongst everyone; I think the first thing was to enjoy training in the sun after the last few weeks back in England in the rain! But it has been good and worthwhile."

West Ham TV