David Moyes seems pleased with how pre-season has gone.
West Ham completed an unbeaten run of summer friendlies with a 2-0 home win over Atalanta in the Betway Cup at the weekend, adding to wins over Northampton Town, Reading, Celtic and Brentford, and draws Dundee and Leyton Orient.
Saturday’s win saw Vladimir Coufal, Tomas Soucek and Declan Rice all make their pre-season returns after an extended summer break following their involvement in Euro 2020, and Moyes has spoken positively about how preparations have unfolded ahead of the new campaign.
With the visit to Newcastle United on Sunday coming up fast, the Hammers are preparing to embark on a historic season that involves Europa League group stage football for the first-ever time, while expectations are reasonably high following the top-six Premier League finish last term.
And Moyes, speaking after the Atalanta win, seems pleased with what he’s seen from his players this summer. Speaking to the club’s official website, he said: “We have got bits we need to tidy up on, like getting the international boys back to play their first bit of football, so I hope they can pick it up quickly. It looked today like they’re all pretty much there.
“I’m not getting carried away, but I actually think we’re playing quite well, so I would be lying if I didn’t think that because I think we have.”
It’s wise not to get too carried away with pre-season form given what happened back in 2002/2003, when we went a full summer unbeaten under Avram Grant before being relegated to the Championship.
However, David Moyes impact since his return to the club, and his positive comments over the weekend, makes it easier to feel relatively confident ahead of the new season.
Another top-six finish will, of course, be a very steep expectation to have, but with a good run in Europe and perhaps the odd cup run, there’s every reason to think we could be about to witness another positive campaign from the team.