Games Getting Closer...

Alan Pardew hopes that the forthcoming trip to Sweden will get the players off to the right start in preparation for the new season.

"It is the pre-season that I did at Reading last year and we had a fantastic start - so hopefully we can do the same at West Ham," he says.

"I think it is nice to take the players away of their environment to somewhere fresh.

"We will have a lot of time to spend with each other in terms of coping with each others' personality and getting our fitness levels right - and the bond between the group.

"When we come back we have got competitive games like we are going to get in the first division and Colchester and Peterborough will be severe tests away from home.

"It will be a good grounding for us to start the season, with the Anderlecht game as well."