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The 59-year-old Hammers manager believes the hectic festive period puts players at increased risk of injury and is keen to follow Europe's lead and introduce a hiatus

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce has reiterated his belief that the Premier League should have a mid-season break.

The 59-year-old recently took his squad for a week of warm-weather training in Dubai, after visiting the Middle East for similar trips in the past two seasons.

Allardyce believes that such training camps boost performances for the remainder of the campaign, and he feels that it is imperative to implement breaks in the season in order to protect players from sustaining injuries.

"I've said for many years that the whole of our country needs to close down at some stage in mid-season," he told Sky Sports.

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"The stats prove that. They do it in the rest of Europe but we, for some reason, find it impossible to do.

"It (not having a break) puts the players at greater risk, especially with the extra fixtures over the Christmas and New Year period.

"As a manager, we have to find the time and the opportunity to take the players away.

"Everything when you come back suggests that it is the right thing to do - you see an increase in fitness."

Prior to the squad's break, West Ham went on a three-match winning run in the Premier League, a sequence that has seen them climb to 11th and clear of relegation trouble.

And Allardyce believes that the return to fitness of key personnel, coupled with a fruitful January transfer window in which the likes of Marco Borriello and Antonio Nocerino have arrived, has boosted the club.

"It's (helped) getting the players fit again," he added. "We had that many devastated by injury that it became very difficult for us to compete at this level.

"We always felt that if we got those players fit again it would increase our level of performance, and of course bringing in new players in the window as well lifts everyone."

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