West Ham will take on Fiorentina in the final of the UEFA Europa Conference League in an 8pm BST kick-off on Wednesday evening from the Fortuna Arena in Prague, Czechia. I’ll give my best bets for the match and try to make sense of the form. It’s a massive game for both, but for West Ham especially, and it’s the chance to get the first major trophy in a long time. My free expert Europa Conference League betting tips can be found below.
La Viola Aiming to Re-Write the History Books
Fiorentina last won a major European trophy back in 1961, winning the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup. The club beat Rangers in the final, which was bizarrely over two legs. They then went and got to the final of the following season’s UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup in 1962. On that occasion, they lost in the final to Atletico Madrid. Fiorentina have won two Italian league titles also back in 1956 and 1969. It’s fair to say that the trophies have dried up in the last 60 years. It’s one thing that the two teams playing in this final have in common.
Fiorentina have lost three matches in this Europa Conference League. They went through the group stages, along with Istanbul Basaksehir. They lost one match in that group phase which was 3-0 to Istanbul away from home. Coming 2nd in the group meant that Fiorentina had to compete in the play-off. They won that match easily, beating Braga 7-2. An impressive result.
The team then easily got through to the Quarter-Finals after they beat Sivasspor 5-1 on aggregate over two legs. They beat Lech Poznan in the Quarter-Finals with a 6-4 aggregate score and then defeated Basel in the Semi-Finals after extra-time with the winning goal coming in the 10th minute of added-on time by Antonin Barak. It’s been a fairly convincing performance all the way through, although some would say that they haven’t played too many really good teams.
West Ham Ready for First European Trophy Since 1965
Whilst West Ham won the Intertoto Cup, back in 1999, it was a shared winners event and, in reality, West Ham have not won a real major European trophy since back in 1965, when they beat 1860 Munich 2-0 in the final, winning the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup.
West Ham won their group stage, topping Group B with an impressive 6 wins from 6 games played. They beat the likes of Anderlecht, Silkeborg, and FCSB all with ease and ended up conceding just 4 goals in the 6 matches they won. They didn’t need to compete in a play-off and so went straight into the last 16, where they beat AEK Larnaca by a 6-0 score over two legs.
In the Quarter-Final, they beat Gent 5-2 over two legs and then in the Semi-Finals, most recently, they beat AZ Alkmaar by a 3-1 aggregate result. In comparison of the two teams, you would have to say that West Ham has had the trickier ties and that could be why they go into this match as favourites. Indeed, West Ham have been one of the favourites for this competition since the very start.
Head-to-Head Meetings and Player Stats
The pair have played each other twice and Fiorentina won both matches but they were both back in 1975 in an Anglo-Italian League Cup Winners’ Cup. We can’t get much from that result.
In terms of players to look out for in this clash, Fiorentina has Arthur Cabral (7 goals from 13 in Europa Conference League matches) and Luka Jovic (6 goals from 12 in Europa Conference League) and that is a very good striking partnership to go up against. West Ham have Michail Antonio (6 goals from 8 in Europa Conference League) and Jarrod Bowen (4 goals from 10 in Europa Conference League).
Fiorentina vs West Ham Betting Tips
This is a very closely matched final and it really could go either way. There has been some talk prior to the match that Fioretina would use “tactical fouls” to stop West Ham’s counterplay and that leads me to think that it’s worth siding with the cards in this one.
On the whole, I think it’ll be a really cagey, close one and I can see it being a 1-0 either way. We may even see extra time and penalties.
West Ham to Lift the Trophy @ 10/11 with Bet365 bonus code
Fiorentina (Most Cards) @ 13/10 with Paddy Power promo code
West Ham to Win 1-0 @ 7/1 Bet365
All odds are accurate at the time of writing.
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