Hammers Look to Overturn 1st Leg Deficit in Monumental Europa League Clash with Sevilla


David Moyes’ West Ham side went down by a single goal in Seville, but will feel as if the tie is still very much within their grasp as they take the Spanish Europa League specialists back to the London Stadium.

Despite a bad end to 2021, West Ham still find themselves battling in and amongst the top seven in the Premier League. However, with Wolves in 8th just two points behind, the Hammers still know that European football for next season is far from secure.

Exit from the FA Cup means that West Ham will have to finish inside to top six to guarantee a place in Europe for next season. However, winning the Europa League would not only secure the Hammers’ qualification into Europe for next season, but would see them upgraded into the Champions League for the 2022/2023 season. Whilst it may only be the Last 16, a victory over six time winners Sevilla would certainly cement their place as one of the new favourites for the competition.

In the first leg, Sevilla were on top for the most part but West Ham had their moments in the game as well, with Nikola Vlasic squandering a golden opportunity by directing a free header from six yards out straight at Bono.

As the game entered the second half, the Hammers had another chance with Michail Antonio laying of for Tomas Soucek, who found that his driven effort was just too central to evade Bono.

Then came the killer goal from Sevilla, off the back of some dreadful marking leaving Munir El Haddadi to caress the ball home from the edge of the area.

Since then, West Ham got back to winning ways with an important Premier League win over Aston Villa, with Yarmolenko and Fornals on the scoresheet.

Sevilla will have looked to have obtained a more extensive lead headed into the second leg, but will rely on their defensively solid unit that has conceded just 19 goals in La Liga this season, seeing them impressively stand in 2nd place.

However, a 1-1 draw for the Southern Spanish outfit against Rayo Vallecano ensured that Real Madrid could increase their buffer to ten points at the top.

Top four is by no means guaranteed, but given the current lofty position of Julian Lopetegui’s side, one could perhaps assume that winning the Europa League is not a necessity. However, with the clubs proud tradition in the completion, there’s no doubt that Sevilla will have full focus on progression against West Ham.

A big miss for the Hammers will unquestionably be Jarrod Bowen, who despite his current injury state is being considered for an England call-up. West Ham will also be missing Vladimir Coufal and Angelo Ogbonna, with Michail Antonio and Aaron Cresswell questionable to return to the lineup having gone off injured on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Sevilla have an extensive injury lists that includes Marcos Acuna, Diego Carlos, Erik Lamela, Lucas Ocampos, Papu Gomez, Karim Rekik and Suso.

Sevilla’s sensational defensive record would certainly suggest that West Ham are going to have a difficult time breaking down their opponents. With the away goals rule scrapped, the Hammers can be less concerned with how many goals they’ll need to win by should they concede, and instead focus on simply winning the game. Winning by a singular goal will take the game into extra time, whereas winning by two or more goals will send the Hammers into the Quarter-Finals of the Europa League. Anything less than a win will see West Ham tumble out of the competition after an impressive run.

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