By 90Min
July 19, 2017

​Former Manchester City defender and recent West Ham addition Pablo Zabaleta was feeling positive following his first taste of action in claret and blue on Monday evening.

Speaking to the Hammers' ​official website, the Argentine full-back was keen to stress his happiness from getting some minutes in for his new club, and seems very pleased with life at his new side after his transfer on a free from Pep Guardiola's City.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 16: Josep Guardiola, Manager of Manchester City talks with Pablo Zabaleta of Manchester City as he goes onto the pitch as a second half substitute during his last home match for the club during the Premier League match between Manchester City and West Bromwich Albion at Etihad Stadium on May 16, 2017 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Clive Mason/GettyImages

West Ham were playing Austrian side Sturm Graz II on Monday night, and eventually drew the game 0-0. Despite the mediocre result though, pre-season is predominately focused on fitness, and Zabaleta insisted the encounter provided the ideal psychical test at the current stage of the team's preparations for the big kick-off.

Following the game at Bad Waltersdorf, the 32-year-old said: “That was our first 45 minutes after 10 days of hard work, and it was good for the team to build up the fitness levels.

“The game was good, obviously we didn’t score but we created a few good chances and their goalkeeper was fantastic.

“It is early days, we have got plenty of time to keep working and be more focused on tactics.

“We have another game on Thursday against Fulham, and it will be a good test for us to keep improving as a team and increase the confidence.”

Having now spent a full week with his new team-mates at the Club’s training camp in Austria, Zabaleta admitted he has settled in perfectly to life as a Hammer and is looking forward to what the new campaign brings.

“I’m really enjoying myself,” he said. “All the lads are fantastic, every single person around the Club has been great, so I’m very pleased.

“I can’t wait for the start of the season. Hopefully we can bring in a few more players to improve the squad, and there are still a few to come back soon from injury, so we all aim to be at 100% for the start of the season.”


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