West Ham United youngster Raphael Spiegel has shared his experiences during the club's pre-season tour of the US.
Speigel was a key member of the Under-21 side that won the Premier League Cup last season, and was taken by Slaven Bilic across the Atlantic.
The Swiss goalkeeper worked hard alongside number one 'keeper Adrian and got some game time, playing both second-half's against the Seattle Sounders and Carolina RailHawks, and the 23-year-old shared his joy at the trip.
He told whufc.com "it’s always nice to go away in pre-season and the further you go, the more exciting it is" and it "has been really good in America and I enjoyed every day and every training" and was a "good experience and we came together as a squad."
Spiegel continued: "in training, it’s a bit harder when you have only two goalkeepers" but said "at this stage of the pre-season it’s perfect because you get very fit" and is "happy to have played two halves and got them under my belt" and with the "other pre-season games ahead, I'll will have more work and I can show what I’m about.”
The goalkeeper is one of youngsters that made the trip to the US, and academy director, Terry Westley, believes the tour will be a crucial experience.
He said: "it’s a great trip and a great experience for the younger players" as "they have all been around the first team and it’s a great chance for the coaches to see the boys play."
Westley concluded: "it’s great for our young ones to be around them" including "Mark Noble, the club captain, and Andy Carroll and the likes" and believes "you don’t get that in pre-season with your own group."
West Ham United will take on FC Slovacko on Tuesday, July 19 with kick-off at 5pm BST.