Everything you need to know about West Ham’s match vs Fiorentina in the Europa Conference League final
On Wednesday at 20:00 BST, West Ham United takes on Fiorentina in the Europa Conference League final as the Hammers attempt to win their first significant trophy in 43 years.
Despite the team only receiving 4,890 tickets for the 19,370-seat Fortuna Arena, there are claims that close to 20,000 West Ham supporters will be in Prague, Czech Republic.
Hammers manager David Moyes declared, “We’re absolutely thrilled to be in the final.” It’s a significant accomplishment for the club, but the next step is to win the game.
Since defeating 1860 Munich in the 1965 European Cup Winners’ Cup final at Wembley, West Ham has gone more than 50 years without taking home a significant European title. The 1980 FA Cup was their last major domestic championship.
After the Champions League and Europa League, the Europa Conference League, already in its second season, is the third-tier European club football competition.
Roma defeated Feyenoord to win the inaugural Europa Conference League championship.
First major European final for West Ham United since 1976
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Why is the space so small?
Prague was selected by Uefa as the competition’s host city before it even began last season.
However, the competition has gained popularity among clubs from larger nations, as evidenced by the semi-final appearances made by Leicester City, Roma, Marseille, and Feyenoord last season.
Uefa has already decided to raise the minimum final capacity starting with the 2019–2020 season to 30,000.
But it’s too late for this one.
Before the Fiorentina vs. West Ham Europa Conference League final in Prague, a general picture of the arena
In the 2013 Uefa Super Cup, Chelsea fell to Bayern Munich on penalties at the Fortuna Arena in Prague.
What is at risk?
West Ham finished 14th in the Premier League standings, six points above the drop zone, but if they defeat their Italian opponents, they would guarantee a third straight season in Europe.
This is because the winners of the Europa Conference League will go to the Europa League’s group stage in 2023–24.
If they are victorious, West Ham will compete alongside Brighton and Liverpool in the following campaign.
Eight English teams will participate in European competitions the following season: Manchester City (Champions League group), Arsenal (Champions League), Manchester United (Champions League), Newcastle United (Champions League), Liverpool (Europa League), Brighton (Europa League), and Aston Villa (Europa Conference League play-off round).
How to follow by listening and watching
The Wednesday final will be fully discussed on BBC Radio 5 Live, and there will be live text, analysis, and reaction on the BBC Sport website.
Everyone in the UK can watch the Europa Conference League final on TV, online, or on a mobile device thanks to BT Sport. The Champions League final between Manchester City and Inter Milan on Saturday at 10:00 BST will follow suit.
“It feels big, it feels special,”
After beginning the Europa Conference League season on August 18 in the play-off round, this is West Ham’s 15th European match of the year.
Romania, Cyprus, the Netherlands, Denmark (twice), Belgium (twice), and Romania have all hosted games for Moyes’ team.
If West Ham wins, Moyes continued, “I don’t know if we’ll ever get a statue, but I do think the players have a good chance to be remembered by everyone at this club.”
“It feels unique,”
Prague’s exhibition of the Europa Conference League trophy
Who will win the Europa Conference League trophy on Wednesday? Roma won it in its debut year.
Fiorentina placed seventh in the Serie A this year and hasn’t claimed a significant European championship since the 1960–61 European Cup Winners’ Cup.
Even though Vincenzo Italiano’s team has suffered three losses in this season’s competition, they have advanced to face West Ham.
Being in the final is a huge accomplishment for me as this is my first season in Europe, said Italiano. “This road will lead us to the end, but we now have a mission to accomplish.”
After losing to Inter Milan in the Coppa Italia final, Fiorentina is playing in their second final of the year.