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Wednesday 31 July Updated Thursday 19 February

Taylor glad of tough tests

Matt Taylor feels the Hammers' recent tour of Germany has helped hone their preparations for the new campaign.

Having played teams from the League of Ireland and the lower divisions in England prior to leaving for Germany, Sam Allardyce's men sharpened themselves up by taking on three Bundesliga outfits.

After being soundly defeated by FSV Mainz in the tour opener, West Ham bounced back superbly to beat Hamburger SV and Eintracht Braunschweig and left-sider Taylor says that is evidence of the progress made in pre-season.

WATCH ALL THE HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE GERMANY TOUR ON WEST HAM TV

"It was a good tour of Germany," he told whufc.com. "It's always easier when you're away.to concentrate on the training and nothing else, to get your body in good condition for the forthcoming season.

"We did that, had a good trip and a good result to finish with on Saturday. I've felt fine over the games we've played and the team has played very well.

"We were caught a bit unawares when we played Mainz - they were exceptionally talented on the ball, but we played a lot better against Hamburg and we scored some good goals as well.

"The tour was a step up in opposition and you need to prepare yourselves as best as you can for the Premier League season. The teams we played out there were very good technically, up there with the teams in the Premier League.

"The games are slightly different in terms of the pace and maybe the way that it is played, but it was a fantastic opportunity to test ourselves against what is arguably one of the best leagues in the world."

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