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Bilic hits back at criticism over players’ fitness

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Slaven Bilic has hit back at criticism over his players’ fitness levels by claiming recent statistics ‘don’t tell the whole story’ and that the Hammers are ‘not getting over-run’ in games.

Recent figures showed that when it came to a number of key statistics, including average distance covered by both the team and individuals, and the average number of sprint per game, West Ham were ranked last of all the 20 Premier League clubs.

After what has been a poor start to the new campaign, with only 2 wins in 10 for Slaven Bilic’s side, the Croatian has come under heavy fire, however he has insisted his side’s poor form is not down to a lack of work rate or fitness.

“I have heard some of the criticism which has come our way since last weekend, especially that we are bottom of the table in both distances covered and sprints this season.” said Bilic in his column in the Evening Standard.

“I have all these statistics and more. They are not the best but in two of the games we had players sent off in the first half and that changes things a lot.

“The inference from the stats is that the players are not fit enough but I don’t see us being over-run. We certainly finished strongly against Spurs and worked hard at Palace. Against Brighton, after the third goal, we quit a little because the game was over.

“We are not flying and the stats don’t lie but they don’t tell you everything.”

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