The 2022-23 season of the Europa Conference League will conclude with an exhilarating final between Fiorentina and David Moyes’ West Ham United at the Eden Arena in Prague.
Tonight, West Ham will face Fiorentina in a crucial match in the Europa Conference League, which holds significant importance for the club’s history. Throughout the season, West Ham’s European journey has provided a welcome distraction from their struggles in the Premier League. Now, it presents them with a tremendous opportunity to secure their first major trophy since their FA Cup triumph in 1980. This final marks their first appearance in a European final in 47 years.
This will be the 15th European game for the Hammers this season, spanning nearly ten months. A victory in this final will earn them a spot in next season’s Europa League. West Ham United finished 14th in the Premier League standings this season and had their fair share of challenges. They suffered a narrow 2-1 defeat against Leicester City in their previous game, so bouncing back is crucial for them this week.
Fiorentina ended the Serie A season in eighth place, meaning they also need a victory in this final to secure European football in the upcoming season. The Italian side has overcome opponents like Braga and Lech Poznan to reach the final. While Fiorentina has not won a major European title since the 1960/61 European Cup Winners’ Cup, they have shown great attacking prowess in the Europa Conference League this season, scoring 36 goals in 14 games en route to the final.
Team news for West Ham vs Fiorentina:
Fiorentina doesn’t seem to have any significant injury concerns as they have made several changes in recent weeks to keep their players fit for the final. Arthur Cabral is expected to lead the line, with Nicolas Gonzalez pushing for a start following his brace in the semi-final win over Basel.
This is likely to be Declan Rice’s final appearance in a West Ham shirt before his anticipated high-value transfer away from the London Stadium this summer. Vladimir Coufal and Tomas Soucek will be eager to start in their home country. There are no other injury concerns for West Ham.
Alphonse Areola is expected to start in goal for West Ham, while Gianluca Scamacca has been confirmed to be unavailable by Moyes.
Prediction for West Ham vs Fiorentina:
Based on recent European finals, it’s unlikely that this match will produce end-to-end, exciting football. This type of game may not align with David Moyes’ preferences either, as West Ham reached the final with a more pragmatic approach against AZ Alkmaar in the semi-finals. West Ham United possesses an impressive squad but has failed to consistently meet expectations this season. Players like Declan Rice and Michail Antonio have the potential to make a significant impact and will be motivated to prove themselves in this crucial match.
Fiorentina has posed challenges to prominent teams in Serie A and will need to adapt to a formidable opponent on Wednesday. They have been on a consistent run of form in recent weeks, giving them a slight advantage heading into the final.
Prediction: Fiorentina 2-1 West Ham United