West Ham United clinched their first European title since 1965 as they defeated Fiorentina in the UEFA Europa Conference League final on Wednesday evening.
The Hammers secured the silverware with a 2-1 win against the Italian club at Prague’s Eden Arena, with Jarrod Bowen scoring the winning goal in the 90th minute.
Due to West Ham’s domestic struggles throughout 2022-23, David Moyes has been criticised by fans and pundits alike, with many suggesting that the veteran manager should leave the club.
However, Moyes guided the Hammers to Premier League safety before lifting the Europa Conference League trophy, proving his doubters wrong while underlining his ability.
Former West Ham midfielder Don Hutchinson joined Adam Summerton and Robbie Savage on the BT Sport commentary team for Wednesday’s final, while Joe Cole, James Horncastle and Carlton Cole joined presenter Jules Breach.
Praising Moyes after the full-time whistle, BT Sport co-commentator Don Hutchinson said:
“It’s amazing. You can see the emotion on his face.”
“The job that David Moyes, when you look back, what he’s done at West Ham. A sixth, a seventh, a semi-final and now a final, and now a champion. So pleased for him.”
Following a cagey first half, West Ham took the lead in the 62nd minute via a Said Benrahma penalty, only for Giacomo Bonaventura to equalise for Fiorentina five minutes later.
The game appeared to be heading for extra time, but Jarrod Bowen latched onto Lucas Paqueta’s through ball in the 90th minute before putting the ball past La Viola goalkeeper Pietro Terracciano.
After saving the Hammers from relegation in 2019-20, Moyes guided the club to a sixth-place finish in 2020-21 before reaching the semi-finals of the UEFA Europa League last season.
Given West Ham’s struggles in the Premier League this term, many believed that Moyes was past his best, but the 60-year-old manager must be given huge credit for overseeing one of the biggest achievements in the club’s history.
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