Sam Allardyce has lifted the lid on his priorities this summer as he begins preparing for a second consecutive season in the Premier League and strengthening the squad for another top-ten finish.
The Hammers manager also revealed what he has asked his players to do during the summer in order to ensure they return for pre-season fresh and ready to go almost instantly.
He told whufc.com in an exclusive interview: “We have nearly finished our planning for pre-season and the players have all had their programmes given to them to take away to start training while they are relaxing at home or on their holidays.
“They are asked to do some active work while they are away so, when they come back on July 1, they are ready to go and we won’t have too many tight muscles. We want them to be able to cope with the demands we put on them from the very beginning.”
Allardyce also revealed that he aims for another top-ten Premier League finish and hopes to achieve that by completing some positive transfer business throughout the summer.
“That’s our minimum ask now [finishing in the top-ten], whereas tenth-place was our maximum ask last season,” he said.
“It does depend on what players we bring in and their quality, and on how much we spend. Hopefully at the start of the season we will have a stronger squad in terms of strength in depth and talent than we had at the start of last season.”
And Allardyce admits that he won’t stop working throughout the summer, even when he’s relaxing on a sun bed somewhere exotic.
“The work never really stops over the summer,” he admits.
“But I can do it from where the sun is shining because of the sommunication levels you can achieve today with the technology. Via Skype or phone or email or conference call, it is pretty easy to keep in touch with everybody.
“If there is an imminent signing, then I’ll be straight back to meet and greet the player and shake hands when he’s signed the contract and welcome him to West Ham United.”