Nick proving that Science is golden

West Ham United's new Head of Sports Science Nick Davies admits he has been delighted by the attitude and application of the players since joining the Club.

Welshman Nick, who left Charlton Athletic this summer to team up with his former manager Alan Curbishley again, has spent the last few weeks settling into his new role at Upton Park and has worked closely with the Hammers squad as they revive their fitness levels following the summer break.

"The work ethic of the boys has really impressed me," he says. "We had to deal with ridiculous heat during the pre-season tour out in Austria recently, but the quality and quantity of work that they got through was fantastic.

"I've discovered very quickly that we have some players here with massive athletic capabilities. We made a conscious decision to work them very hard in the early part of pre-season, and they have responded superbly.

"There has been a lot of positive feedback, which has pleased me greatly. The players can see the results of the work they are putting in, and know that it is specific to what they need at this present time.

"And it's not just their physical performance that has been first class, it's their overall attitude. They have embraced the recovery strategies, such as the ice baths, protein drinks and wearing of skins, and that level of care is just as important as the hard work they put in on the pitch."

As a recent addition to the backroom staff, Nick has also been getting used to his new surroundings, but has already established himself as a popular and likeable figure around the training ground. He has worked closely with Conditioning Coach Alex Dyer, and has nothing but praise for his new partner in the Sports Science department.

"I get on great with Alex," says Nick. "I have got massive respect for the sessions that he puts on, and he has great qualities as both a coach and a person. I honestly can't speak highly enough of him and it has been a pleasure to work with him.

"The same goes for the other members of staff who I didn't know before coming here - they have all made me feel welcome. Obviously I know Curbs and Mervyn from my time at Charlton, and there are now quite a few of us who have made the move over here, but everyone has mixed in well."

Nick, who was a youth trainee with Plymouth Argyle before heading into the world of sports science, spent three years working under Alan Curbishley at The Valley, and admits he is thrilled to be linking up with his old boss again.

"It does help when you see some familiar faces at a new place of work, and I must admit that working with Curbs again was a big attraction for me," he says. "I spent four years at Charlton and loved the club, so it was a wrench to leave. I actually had an opportunity to go to Celtic a little while ago, but didn't think it was right for me.

"However, when I got the call from Curbs, I knew it was something I couldn't turn down. It's an opportunity to work at the very highest level again, with someone who I have enormous respect and admiration for. I'm delighted to be working with Mervyn again, too, who is a real top man.

"I'm enjoying my role here immensely. It's clear to see that everyone is pulling together in the same direction, and that is a great strength for a Club to have. Having seen how hard the players are working, I'm really excited about the new season and looking forward to the challenge ahead."