Hammers head for Germany

West Ham United can confirm the club's 2010/11 pre-season preparations are set to include a training camp in Germany between 16 and 24 July.

The Hammers are due to travel to a base near the German-Austrian border, although the summer match schedule will begin with a friendly closer to home at Peterborough United on Wednesday 14 July. Avram Grant's squad will head to the continent two days later.

The trip will mean a swift return home for Munich-born Thomas Hitzlsperger, with the Germany midfielder set to report to Chadwell Heath for pre-season training next week after his transfer from S.S. Lazio.

The first fixture lined up will be against Bundesliga outfit VfL Borussia Monchengladbach in Ruhpolding on Saturday 17 July before the trip concludes with a date across the Austrian border in Kitzbuhel against Greek giants Panathinaikos FC on Friday 23 July. A possible third game has yet to be confirmed.

The Hammers will return home a day later with just a fortnight remaining until the glamour pre-season friendly against Spanish side RC Deportivo La Coruna for the SBOBET Cup on Saturday 7 August. In between, a Hammers side will take on Burton Albion on Saturday 24 July, while first-team friendlies will take place at MK Dons and Ipswich Town on Wednesday 28 and Saturday 31 July respectively.

Pre-season training camp opponents

Saturday 17 July v VfL Borussia Monchengladbach, 6pm local time, Ruhpolding, Germany

Monchengladbach finished 12th in the German Bundesliga last season and have a strong history at home and abroad. In the 1970s, they won the title four times and also lost the 1977 European Champion Clubs' Cup final to Liverpool. Managed by former Manchester City defender Michael Frontzeck, their squad boasts United States midfielder Michael Bradley. The club will hope the match - which would be the first-ever meeting - takes place after last July's friendly against German side Werder Bremen in Austria was rained off.

Friday 23 July v Panathinaikos FC, 6.30pm local time, Kitzbuhel, Austria

The reigning Greek double winners, big-spending Panathinaikos boast France forward Djibril Cisse and Greece midfielder Kostas Katsouranis in their squad. The Athens club, led by Nikos Nioplias, have won the title 20 times and will get another crack at the UEFA Champions League next season, having lost the 1971 final to AFC Ajax. The Hammers drew 1-1 with Panathinaikos in August 1991 in the third-place play-off at the Makita International Tournament at Highbury, before losing 3-2 on penalties.