• Sports - Football - Gossips
  • Updated: June 08, 2023

EPL: Bowen Propels West Ham Past Fiorentina To Claim First European Crown In 50 Years

EPL: Bowen Propels West Ham Past Fiorentina To Claim First E

Jarrod Bowen

West Ham United secured a sensational 2-1 victory over Fiorentina in the Europa Conference League final, clinching their first major European trophy in over 50 years.

The match, held at Prague's Eden Arena on Wednesday, witnessed Jarrod Bowen's heroics as he slid home a 90th-minute winner, sending the Hammers' faithful into delirium.

The game seemed destined for extra time, but Lucas Paqueta's perfectly weighted pass found Bowen, who showcased his blistering pace to outmanoeuvre the Fiorentina defenders and unleash an unstoppable shot beyond the reach of goalkeeper Pietro Terracciano.

Reflecting on his winning goal, an ecstatic Bowen exclaimed to BT Sport, "I obviously dreamed of scoring, but to score the winner in the last minute—it's what you always say you want to do.

"To do it in front of these fans. I thought I was going to cry. I'm just happy."

The path to victory began when Said Benrahma converted a penalty in the 62nd minute, following a VAR review that confirmed a handball by Fiorentina's captain, Cristiano Biraghi.

The Italian full-back had been a constant threat with his penetrating runs down the flank, causing headaches for West Ham's defence.

Fiorentina responded admirably after conceding, and their efforts were rewarded five minutes later.

Giacomo Bonaventura demonstrated his skill by deftly controlling the ball amidst the pressure of two defenders and slotting home an angled shot beyond the reach of West Ham goalkeeper Alphonse Areola.

Throughout the match, both teams struggled to create clear-cut chances.

Fiorentina dominated possession but lacked the final touch, while West Ham endured spells without the ball.

However, it was the Hammers who ultimately capitalized on the opportunity that presented itself in the dying minutes.

As the final whistle blew, West Ham players raced towards the corner of the pitch to celebrate their historic victory in front of their jubilant fans, who revelled in their first triumph in a European final since lifting the Cup Winners' Cup in 1965.

Disappointed by the defeat, Fiorentina defender Nikola Milenkovic said, "It hurts to lose like this. We played well but can't concede such an easy goal in the final minutes.

"The team gave their all, but in certain situations, we have to be more concentrated – keep controlling the game and pressing. In finals, small details make the difference."

The atmosphere at the Eden Arena was electric, with passionate supporters from both sides making their presence felt.

Unfortunately, the match witnessed an unfortunate incident when West Ham fans threw cups at Fiorentina's Biraghi, striking him and causing a minor injury.

The referee halted play momentarily to address the situation.

Furthermore, due to UEFA's allocation of only 5,780 tickets to each club, many loyal fans could not attend the final in person.

Instead, thousands of West Ham supporters gathered in bars and fan zones around Prague to watch the enthralling encounter.

West Ham United's triumph in the Europa Conference League final qualifies them for a spot in next season's Europa League despite finishing 14th in the Premier League standings.

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