Slaven Bilic insists West Ham share same aims as reigning champions Leicester this season

West Ham manager Slaven Bilic

Slaven Bilic has spoken candidly about West Ham United's aims for the new season and says they will be the same as those of reigning champs Leicester City.

West Ham manager Slaven BilicWest Ham manager Slaven Bilic

The Hammers impressed fans and pundits alike by mounting a serious challenge for the Champions League places in Bilic's debut season.

As well as taking a number of notable scalps home and away, including a historic treble over Liverpool, Bilic has reinvigorated the East Londoners and with stars such as Dimitri Payet and Manuel Lanzini, the Hammers are playing the 'West Ham way' once more.

The Irons officially enjoyed their best ever points tally in the Premier League era and had a positive goal difference for the first time since 1986.

West Ham manager Slaven Bilic celebrates after the match with their coaching staffWest Ham manager Slaven Bilic celebrates

Record-breaking season

Bilic also masterminded a fitting and thrilling 3-2 comeback win over Manchester United in the last ever game at Upton Park and steered the club into the Europa League for their first season at the 60,000 seater Olympic Stadium.

Fans and owners alike were delighted with the club's progress as they finished just four points off the Champions League places.

Given the fiercely competitive nature of the Premier League next year - with a collection of the best managers in world football now plying their trade here - Bilic will have to go some to better last year's seventh place finish.

With the stadium move and last season's achievements still fresh in the memory expectations are high in East London.

Leicester City - Premier League Title Winners ParadeLeicester City's title winning parade

Fairytale Foxes

The same can be said of the Foxes who pulled off one of the most remarkable feats in football history when they won the Premier League title last season and secured Champions League football in the process.

Claudio Ranieri's men have been hailed by neutrals for restoring faith in modern day football as a result.

Speaking to the London Evening Standard, Bilic insists his side's initial aim next season is simply to avoid relegation, the same as Leicester.

West Ham's manager Slaven Bilic looks dejectedCautious: West Ham's manager Slaven Bilic

'It is all very dangerous'

"When we talk about Champions League, Europa League, mid-table, it is all very dangerous. Make no mistake," Bilic told the Evening Standard.

"I am a confident, over-optimistic person but apart from the top seven clubs on paper everybody is looking forward to 40 points.

"And that includes Leicester."

Foxes fans will undoubtedly be quick to dismiss Bilic's suggestion, as will many ambitious Hammers fans.

West Ham manager Slaven Bilic On the ball: Bilic

Bilic wise or overly cautious?

But given Leicester started last season as relegation certs - and indeed only survived the season before thanks for a remarkable turnaround under Nigel Pearson - perhaps it is a wise approach to take.

The reigning champions will have elite level European competition to contend with for the first time too while West Ham have the arduous Europa League campaign to factor into their own season.

Given the riches on offer just for being a Premier League team nowadays, Bilic's attitude is the correct one to adopt and guards against complacency.

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch