West Ham United wins the Europa Conference League in Prague last night, courtesy to a late Bowen class which helps them win a major trophy after a hiatus of 43 years from the top flight tournaments. It was a tight match between Italian club Fiorentina and David Moyes managed side West Ham, but it was the Hammers who had the last laugh in Prague.
Bowen heroics lead West Ham to register victory in Conference League final
West Ham and Fiorentina has come to the finals of a major tournament after being absent for many years in a major European tournament. So, both the teams had been up for some show as they needed to prove their worth after becoming the finalists. The match got off to a slow start after the whistle as both sides needed to make themselves comfortable in the finals. As a result, the first half went bland with both sides holding their fort at 0-0.
But, it were the fans who has taken a center stage after they came to occasion while throwing beer cups on to the pitch, one of which also hit Fiorentina captain Cristiano Biraghi. His head was cracked and was heavily bleeding but he was fit to continue playing, as he could realize the gravity of the game.
Serbian striker Luka Jovic did make some inroads in the first half when he lodged the ball past Hammers goalkeeper Areola, only to be ruled by offside, which made things more miserable for the Italian side.
Benrahma opens the scoring
After 62 minutes of play, it was Moyes’ side who drew the first blood in the ultimate showdown. Jarrod Bowen’s swift movement and passes in the penalty box saw Biraghi commit a handball which led West Ham to be awarded with a spot kick. Algerian Benrahma converted it to give the Premier League side take the lead by 1-0.
But the match was brought to life by Vincenzo Italiano’s side who equalized in the blink of an eye, where veteran Bonaventura caught West Ham defense loose and hit back, to make things spicy with merely 20 minutes left in the game. Bonaventura became the oldest Italian at 33 years to score in the final of a major tournament after Paolo Maldini in 2005 Champions League Final.
It was Bowen again as he found the back of the net on the dying minutes, slotting the winner and increasing his tally to 13 goals, simultaneously contributing with nine assists.
As a result, English international Declan Rice, who also captained the Hammers, bows out as a hero if he leaves the club next season, with Arsenal and Bayern Munich as his probable destinations.