The Conference Europa League will not be owned by Italy. One year after the first edition won by AS Roma, Fiorentina failed to win the C4 in Prague (Czech Republic) on Wednesday evening. First European club to play a final in the 4 European Cups (C1 in 1957, C2 in 1961 and 1962, C3 in 1990 and therefore C4 this year), La Viola lacked efficiency to win a 2nd European trophy since 1962.
West Ham, winners of the Cup Winners' Cup in 1965, ended a 58-game drought on continental events. After a complicated year in the Premier League with a maintenance acquired in the last days (14th), the London formation led by the French internationals Alphonse Areola and Kurt Zouma ended the season in the most beautiful way with this success (2-1) at the end of the suspense against Fiorentina.
Cristiano Biraghi bleeding after receiving a cup on his head
After the arrest of 16 Fiorentina fans earlier in the day, the first act of this final is tasteless with no chances on either side. Worse, the match was interrupted due to the throwing of cups by English fans towards the Italian full-back Cristiano Biraghi. One of the cups hits the player of the Viola, who is bleeding from the scalp. After the intervention of the trainers, the match resumes.
But, it is necessary to wait for the hour of play for the match to unravel. England's Jarrod Bowen claims a hand from Cristiano Biraghi in the penalty area. Questioned by the VAR, the referee decides to look at the images and awards a penalty to the Hammers. It was converted by Algerian international Saïd Benrahma with a powerful right-foot strike into the box (0-1, 62nd). It was then thought that the English had done the hardest but the Italians reacted quickly.
On the right side, Nicolas Gonzalez wins his duel with Emerson, in the penalty area. From the header, he finds Giacomo Bonaventura, who controls with his left foot, before scoring with a millimeter strike with his right foot close to the post of Alphonse Areola (1-1, 67th). In the aftermath, a shot by Rolando Mandragora grazes the right post of Areola (70th). As we head for extra time, the former Lyonnais Paqueta launches deep Jarrod Bowen who wins his duel against the Italian goalkeeper (1-2, 90th). The Hammers can exult. They won their first C4 and qualified for the Europa League (C3) next season.